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Ethical Management Essay

946 words - 4 pages

The role of public administrator is complex and difficult due to the continuous changes in rules, policies, training programs, laws, and organizational arrangements. Despite all the efforts, people in public organizations still conduct “unethical activities and willfully inadequate work performance.” which shows irresponsibility. These two forms of conduct result from a conflict between internal and external control. (Cooper, P. 161) The individual conducts represents the internal control. So, if the subjective responsibility and objective responsibility of the position were not well linked, public administrator would behave irresponsibly towards the organization’s goals. In addition, effective ethical conduct works better in supportive environment, which results in responsible conduct.
The “individual attributes” such that as skills in making ethical decisions, virtues, and inner values or professional values are considered the internal control. The internal control must be coherent with three major elements: organizational structure, organizational culture, and social expectations.
Stephen Bailey emphasizes the individual virtues as the inner qualities. He also provides three important “mental attitudes” and three essential “moral qualities” as required for all public administrators “in every level of government.” (Cooper, P. 168) The important mental attitudes that the public administrator shall have as a mindset while dealing with public service are as follow: recognition of moral ambiguity, recognition of contextual forces, and recognition of paradoxes of procedures. First, the recognition of the moral ambiguity of all people and all public policies, which deals with the double inclinations inside the human nature towards self-interest and philanthropy, is one of the required mental attitudes in public servants. For example, a poor employee with four children would be torn between accepting bribery for not applying organizational rules and maintaining the organizational policy by rejecting the offer to conduct ethical behavior. The second mental attitude is the recognition of the “contextual forces” that state moral priorities in public service. As there is always a change in the context and there are hidden reasons. That is where public administrator needs to develop and apply a theoretical perspective “through a combination of professional experience, contemplation, study, and deliberation with colleagues whether in a structured course or through self-motivated inquiry.” (Cooper, P. 14) For example, a public administrator might be in a position to choose between two harmful conducts. In this case he is to do less harm to the majority. The third mental attitude is the recognition of the paradoxes of procedures. This manner addresses the need for consistent procedures such as; equality of treatment, orders, and predictability and the threat they present by “becoming ends in themselves.” (Cooper, P.168) As Macaulay says that the art of...

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