Established, since 1997, leading UK based training provider.
Celebrating 25 years in business! CPD Member - The CPD Certification Service ilm Recognised Provider

How can I be an Ethical Leader?

How Can I be an Ethical Leader?

How Can I be an Ethical Leader?

Good leadership has a strong moral / ethical component, because when leadership is unethical and immoral, all hell breaks loose.

Ethical leaders should be:

  1. Honest.
  2. Hard working.
  3. Peaceable.
  4. Co-operative.
  5. Have Integrity.

What is ethics?

Ethics is a branch of philosophy. Ethics teaches people how they should act, especially in their relationships with others. Because there are many different philosophies, there are many ethical systems from which to choose.

Religious ethics.

Many ethical principles are derived from religious philosophies. For example, as a child, I was taught the 10 commandments, which were taken from the Christian Bible. But ALL religions come complete with an ethics. Indeed, ethics is one of the main reasons children are taught religion.

Non-religious ethics.

We don't need to be religious to be ethical: Secular ethics are often as good as religious ethics. Secular Humanists have their own ethics, which boil down to, "Treat people the same way you would like to be treated".

How to be an ethical leader.

In order to be ethical, we must decide which values we should hold; and then we live by them; every day, in every way.

Non-religious ethical values for leaders,

Here is a list of non-religious ethics that I believe everyone reading this could agree with. To be ethical, we should all strive to be:

  • Honest.
  • Hard working.
  • Peaceable.
  • Co-operative.
  • Have Integrity.

Let us say a few words on each:

Honesty.

Honesty has two aspects:

  • Honesty in terms of speech: Leaders should tell the truth.
  • Honesty in terms of property: Leaders should never steal or defraud.

Integrity.

Integrity means "Always acting in accordance with ones professed beliefs":

Leaders should act in accordance with their own statements.

Some people say one thing, but do the opposite.

They lack integrity.

For leaders who have integrity, their "word is their bond".

Hard Working.

For the humans to survive, at least some people must work hard.

Laziness is a vice, since if everybody was lazy, then the human race would starve to death.

All lazy people count on non-lazy-people to "pick up the slack" that their idleness creates.

In that sense, lazy people are parasitic.

Leaders have a strong "work ethic".

Peaceable.

For us to survive, we need to have peace. If there were no peace, then there would be no survival.

Aggressive, warlike leaders lead their followers to destruction.

Ethical leaders (eg Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King) believe in living by peaceable thoughts, feelings, and behaviours.

Ethical leaders are interested in peace, not war.

Co-operation.

When we act as individuals, we are not a particularly impressive species. Compared to other animals, we are not particularly big, we cannot fly, we have no claws, we cannot run fast, we cannot swim well. But when humans cooperate, and work together, then we can do amazing things.

Leaders should inspire cooperation.

Cooperation is a virtue and an ethical good.

Leadership Training

If you are interested in becoming a better Leader/Manager, please attend our Leadership and Management Training Course.

About the Author: Chris Farmer

Chris

Chris Farmer is the founder of the Corporate Coach Group and has many years’ experience in training leaders and managers, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve their organisational goals, especially during tough economic times. He is also well aware of the disciplines and problems associated with running a business.

Over the years, Chris has designed and delivered thousands of training programmes and has coached and motivated many management teams, groups and individuals. His training programmes are both structured and clear, designed to help delegates organise their thinking and, wherever necessary, to improve their techniques and skills.

Blogs by Email

Do you want to receive an email whenever we post a new blog? The blogs contain article 5-10 minutes long - ideal for reading during your coffee break!

Further Reading in Leadership and Management

  • What is the Leadership Quality that People Overlook?
    Rationality is the one leadership skill that is commonly overlooked. Being an effective leader means being able to use deductive and inductive reasoning and logic, and treating all people reasonably.
    Read Article >
  • Leadership Skills: Keep Calm and Carry On
    Irrespective of your thoughts on whether or not Brexit is good or bad, the fact is that the UK will soon be making its negotiations to leave the EU and we need to succeed.
    Read Article >
  • What is the RACI Matrix?
    Learn more about the RACI Matrix, a model for clarifying responsibilities in a project, in this article from expert management trainer Chris Farmer.
    Read Article >
  • Good leadership and management is just common sense isn't it?
    Isn't good leadership and management just common sense? At the conclusion of the two day effective leader manager course and the advanced leadership course I am often told the same thing by departing delegates. They often say "that was a terrific course and I learned a lot. But when you think...
    Read Article >
  • What is the Power Interest Matrix?
    The Matrix is based on the amount of information and interest all the different stakeholders in a project have, and consequently the correct amount of communication each of these groups should receive. How can this be achieved?
    Read Article >

Looking for Leadership and Management Training?

If you're looking to develop your Leadership and Management Skills, you may find this Leadership and Management Training Course beneficial:

Open Training Course Pricing and Availability

7 - 8 February
Birmingham M6 J7
£900 +VAT
27 - 28 February
London - Central
£900 +VAT
2 - 3 March
Online - Teams
£900 +VAT
6 - 7 March
Manchester City
£900 +VAT
More dates and locations available
Save £100 on this course

Next Open Course Starts in 8 days, Birmingham M6 J7, places available Book Now >