Personal Ethics Development Paper Humans are born into the world without any personal values or belief systems. The only skill a newborn has is the ability to cry when he or she requires food, attention, or comfort. Ethics are learned and developed from the time one is born and continue throughout his or her life. The goal of developing values in children is to establish the capability to make sound judgments and ethical decisions (Kohlberg, 1971). This narrative will focus on the examination of my personal ethics, ground rules, and ethical development.
I will define my ethical system, its primary principles, and the sources from which they derive (people, institutions, events, etc. ). The criteria and decision-making factors I employ to revise my values will also be explored. Additionally, by providing a personal example, I will discuss the potential effect of my values on my performance in my workplace. Finally, I will attempt to explain why ethics are needed in an organization and how ethics are integrated into the organization to achieve its direction and goals. Personal ethical development
Many individuals exist with varying values and ethical standards, and some may be similar to your own; however, it is my opinion no two individuals standards and values are identical. Individual ethics and values are established by one’s culture, background, and environment. My family taught me traditional values that became the backdrop for my upbringing. The notion of religion, family, harmony, truthfulness, and education were instilled at an early age. I was taught to obey and that the first obligation of a child was to make my parents proud.
I learned early in my life about diversity and the importance of appreciating and respecting those of different cultures. As far back as I can recall, my parents established that reverence for God was the utmost significant thing in life. The priority that was laid-out was God, church, then family. Every evening, our family would gather to say our prayers; we would pray for our family, friends, government leaders, and those less fortunate than us. We attended church services twice on Sunday and every Wednesday evening we attended Bible study.
Although my thinking has evolved, it is my opinion that this religious exposure is at the core of my moral standards and duty-based belief system today. Criteria used to revise my values Human nature as well as life experiences are factors in further development of values. These factors serve to both strengthen and moderate our value sets. When individuals are confronted with quandaries about values, definite questions arise, such as what forged those positions and beliefs. The personal ethics of each individual should be considered as valuable.
Those principles will symbolize that person’s utmost priority and compelling force. Values and ethics are accepted by an individual and used in either his or her personal as well as business worlds. In light of this, if a person brings personal values and ethics into his or her organization and that workplace fails to uphold ethics as precedence, it is not likely the individual will be successful at that organization. Over the years, life experiences have taught me to align myself properly with organizations, people, and places that match my ethical criteria.
This is not to suggest I am closed-minded; however, I believe require common ground prior to revising my ethical standards. For example, I once believed if someone were of a different faith, he or she would not “go to heaven. ” It has been only through a process of realigning my beliefs that I do not believe that way. Love, tolerance, and open-mindedness are the keys by which I can evaluate my positions and reorganize my thoughts surrounding them. Personal example Early in my career in sales, I obtained employment at a local Ford dealership as a sales associate. I worked there quite successfully for 18 months.
One-day a 70+ year old lady walked in and wanted to buy a Ford Escort. She had with her a folder that provided her the Internet pricing and wondered if we would make her a good deal. I told her I would and presented the information to the general manager. He advised me there was no way an old lady like that would have Internet pricing and directed me to change her way of thinking. Essentially everything he advised me to tell her was not true. I then informed him I under no uncertain terms would I lie to this customer. He angrily asked me, “Are you saying that I need to find a competent sales person to close this? I responded by saying, “If you define competency as lying, cheating, and stealing from an old lady, then that is exactly what I am telling you. ” I quickly left his office and returned to the customer. I told her that if I were her I would gather my things and leave. She graciously hugged me for my honesty and left without buying a car. Based on that experience and many others, I decided that line of work was aligned with my belief system. That decision was based solely on the morals, values, and ethical standards that had been instilled in me from an early age.
Within 30 days of that incident, I was gainfully employed by a Fortune 500 company selling tax and accounting software to accountants, Certified Public Accountants, and tax practitioners. That new role turned out to be far more rewarding as there was not a culture of corruption and dishonesty. Ethics within an organization When an individual joins an organization, he or she brings certain viewpoints and values to the organization. The values an individual possesses will meld with those of other employees. This will, in part, help build culture of the organization.
This organizational culture turns out to be the character of the business. The culture is also based on the norms and ideals of the management and current employees. According to Trevino and Nelson, “… three out of four respondents claimed that their company’s code of ethics, or ethics in general, actually means something to them in their day-to-day work” (2007, p. 6). Individuals tend to want to align themselves with organizations comprised of the highest standards; therefore, it is important for any organization to create an environment conducive to respect, inclusion, integrity, and loyalty.
Conclusion Personal ethics development is an ongoing process that begins from childbirth. Many factors help formulate ones values and ethical systems. My religious upbringing helped mold me into the person I am today. Although I have reevaluated some of the ethical positions I held previously, my foundation remains the same. As is apparent by the personal example provided, I am passionate about ethics even in a business setting. If the standards of an organization are grossly misaligned with my ethical beliefs, I will terminate the relationship.
Ethics within an organization are as vitally important to the success of the organization as they are to the individual. By far, my feeling is if organizations and individuals also strive to understand what is right and wrong and do what is right, the world will be a better place. References Kohlberg, Lawrence (1971). From Is to Ought: How to Commit the Naturalistic Fallacy and Get Away with It in the Study of Moral Development. New York: Academic Press. Trevino, L. K. , & Nelson, K. A. (2007). Managing business ethics: Straight talk about how to do it right (4th ed. ). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.