Applying the Golden Rule in Business

“All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them, for this is the law and the prophets.” ~Jesus

“That which you hold as detestable, do not do to your neighbor.” ~ Talmud

“None of you is a believer if he does not desire for his brother that which he desires for himself.”  ~ Islam

“Here certainly is the Golden Maxim: Do not do to others that we do not want them to do to us.”  ~ Confucius

The Golden Rule is existent across cultures and religions.  The exact words can be different but the meaning is the same.

Treat others as you wish to be treated.  

This maxim should be the basis for interacting with colleagues, in the workplace.  It’s usually the first thought one has when asked to consider business ethics.  When faced with real-life ethical dilemmas at work, we start to see the “gray” area.  A corporate ethics campaign poster read, “Between right and wrong is a troublesome gray area.”

The way employees handle ethical or moral dilemmas they face at work is generally determined by the organization’s culture or ethical temperature and this is tempered by the top management of an organization.  When the manager does the right thing and makes it known that all employees are expected to do the right thing, the organizational leader gains trust from employees, clients, stakeholders and cultivates an ethical culture.  And, this is also good for business.

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