Assignment: Ethically Defensible Decision Making by Danaa Ross This paper defines ethically defensible decisions, elements of ethnically defensible decision, and gives examples. In addition, this essay explores ground rules and implications.
Ethically Defensible Decision Making
Robert (Mick) Collins
February 05, 2004
Thus far in class we have learned to increase our problem solving skills by using different critical thinking tools; however, we have not yet broached the subject of ethics. Here now, I will discuss how ethics and decisions blend together to blur the lines of fairness and profitability, in business, and in the workplace; only to make your everyday job all that more challenging. But before I launch into a discussion on "ethically defensible decisions", first I will explain the term. I will define the elements of an ethically defensible decision, and give examples of ethically defensible decisions you might encounter in your workplace.
After this is understood, I will describe to you a situation that occurred where the lines were blurred in my workplace, and I chose to use critical thinking to overcome the potential disaster. After the situation is clear, I will spend some time discussing ground rules, which are a part of ethical decision making, whether written or implied. Finally, I will summarize with implications of decision making.
The word ethics means different things to different people. Depending on where you grew up, who you were raised by, what kind of family life you had, what race you were, etc. etc. There have been many scholars who can argue that ethics is an essential part of who we are. People are attracted to others who have similar ethics that they themselves hold dear to their heart. They in return pass these ethics down to their offspring. What is unethical to one person can be perfectly acceptable to another. For this reason, it is difficult to agree on a definition of ethics. For the purposes of this paper, we will use the definition from Oxford English Dictionary (OED); "Ethic" is defined as follows: "The moral principles by which a person is guided." (OED) An example taken from the definition section of Oxford English Dictionary online, but originally quoted in 1837 is a quote by M. Donovan Dom. Econ. II. Stating, "It is not the province of man to pronounce judgment on the ethics of his fellow-creature, in the last extremities of starvation." (OED)
In this statement you can see that M. Donovan is making an ethical statement from his own viewpoint. He is issuing a "should not" statement, telling all men they should not judge other men if they are starving, the behavior is justifiable. This would be an example of an ethically defensible decision. There are several elements that make up an ethically defensible decision.
First you have ground rules, whether written or implied, and then you have values that make up your character. Ground rules are rules that make up both sides of each...