Complete Guide to Ethics Management: an Ethics Toolkit for Managers

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Complete Guide to Ethics Management: An Ethics Toolkit for Managers Written by Carter McNamara, MBA, PhD, Authenticity Consulting, LLC. Copyright 1997-2008. (This guide is located at on the Web.)

The profession of business ethics has long needed a highly practical resource that is designed particularly for leaders and managers -- those people charged to ensure ethical practices in their organizations. Unfortunately, far too many resources about business ethics end up being designed primarily for philosophers, academics and social critics. As a result, leaders and managers struggle to really be able to make use of the resources at all. Also, far too many resources about business ethics contain sensationalistic stories about businesses "gone bad" or prolonged preaching to businesses to "do the right thing". These resources often explore simplistic ethical questions, such as "Should Jane steal from the company?" The real world of leaders and managers is often much more complex than that.

This guide is a straightforward and highly practical tool designed to help leaders and managers implement comprehensive ethics management systems in their workplaces -- systems to deal with the complex, ethical issues that can occur in the day-to-day realities of leading and managing an organization.

For Web readers:
This free guidebook is about 20 pages long (8 1/2" x 11" pages). If you are reading the document on the World Wide Web, please wait until the document is fully loaded before attempting to link to its sections listed below. The best approach to using this guidebook may be to print it out for ongoing reference. The Free Management Library provides additional information about ethics and a great range of other free information about management. For a complete list of library topics, see

The author, Carter McNamara, MBA, PhD, makes no warranty, express or implied, nor assumes any legal liability for accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information from this guide.

Another Tool to Effectively Infuse Ethical Principles:
If you are planning to infuse strong, ethical principles throughout your company or want to change the culture of your company, then you might take the advice of Bob Kniffin, Vice President of External Affairs, at Johnson and Johnson (J&J) company. The way that J&J handled an ethical issue (the "Tylenol scare" crisis) in the 1980s is probably one of the most inspiring and enlightening examples of how to successfully deal with a major ethical issue in business. Kniffin was one of the key players in helping J&J to handle the crisis so effectively. Kniffin said that it was not the J&J Credo (a form of a code of ethics) that helped J&J to handle the crisis so well. Rather, it was the ongoing "challenge sessions" that the company regularly held in order for each person to clarify their own perspective and commitment to the J&J Credo. Authenticity Consulting's peer coaching groups are a powerful, yet straightforward, means to organize, facilitate and evaluate challenge sessions. For more information about the peer coaching groups, go to our publications site ( and consider the "Program Planning Kit".

About this Free Guidebook
· This free guidebook aims to fill a large void of practical, realistic ethics information for leaders and managers, whether nonprofit or for-profit. · This guidebook takes about two hours to read. It is concisely written and well organized as a step-by-step guidebook for handy reference. · This guidebook is free in order to make its contents highly accessible to organizations, particularly those with limited resources. The free nature of this document does not in any way indicate that its content are of low value -- high fees and impressive presentation do not necessarily imply high value. · The author hopes the...
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