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By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Managing Ethical Dilemmas

Managing Ethical Dilemmas

Decision making is difficult enough when you’re dealing with everyday issues. When you add in ethical considerations, the difficulty jumps to another level. How to handle it is the focus of this week’s first tip.

Here’s the truth: Life isn’t black and white. It’s gray. Whether you like it or not, you’ll run into occasional spots where you’ve got to make a decision, but knowing right from wrong won’t be as crystal clear as you wish it were.

You might have a boss, colleague, or client who behaves in a questionable way. Maybe you’re asked to sign off on some numbers you know to be inaccurate. Pressures at work can make this kind of decision hard.

What do you do? Remember that you can’t make the wrong call on an ethical dilemma more than once or twice; it kills your credibility. So be thoughtful about your standing at work, the importance of the situation, your values, and whether or not you can take the conversation into a more public forum.

That takes us to tip number two: making tough decisions. These are the biggies, the ones that come along rarely but have big implications. They may or may not concern ethical dilemmas, but they can make or break your reputation.

In these situations, you’ve got to focus on the difference between respect and popularity as a decision maker, the short-term and long-term implications of your options, and of course, the politics.

Watch this week’s tips to improve your ability to handle the tough calls at work.

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