Leadership and Business Ethics
Gabriel Flynn and Patricia H. Werhane This book points to a necessary relationship between ethics and business; the success of such an alliance depends directly on sound business leadership. Without the sort of leadership that upholds the dignity and rights of employees and clients, as well as the interests of shareholders, even the most meticulously prepared ethics statements are destined to founder, as evidenced at Enron and elsewhere. Over the past 30 years or so, since business ethics became established as a discipline in its own right, much progress has been made in the ethical conduct of business at all levels. In short, business people, like politicians, doctors and church leaders, have come to realize that it is not possible to avoid involvement in ethics, for much of what business people do and cannot do may be subject to ethical evaluation. While the history of business ethics as currently practised may be traced to the medieval and ancient periods; our principal concern is with developments in the ?eld over recent decades. A consideration of how the topic has been treated by the Harvard Business Review, the business world’sleadingprofessionaljournal,provideshelpful insights into past progress and present challenges. In 1929, just as business ethics was beginning to evolve, Wallace B.
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