Ethics within Ethics?

I have a folder of unread RSS items. I poke through it from time to time. So It was that I found a May 23 blog entry by Daniel Altman.

I like Mr. Altman’s blog. I like his insights on globalization. Consequently, I was disappointed with a note he added to the bottom of his article. He blamed his staff for losing a computer file.

Ironically, the May 23 article focused on the value of socially ethical investing, with allusions to Enron. Is not Mr. Altman’s action in blaming his staff the same type of behavior we saw from Enron’s senior executives?

An organization’s culture flows from its top. Whether it is ethical or organizational behavior, the behavior of an organization’s leaders serve as a template for that of the organization’s employees.

I’ll bet that Mr. Altman’s leadership played a role in the loss of the computer file, even if indirectly. I believe it speaks volumes when a leader, such as Mr. Altman, tries to evade responsibility for an error in his organization. Were there similar evasions that took place in his staff?

C’mon Mr. Altman, step up and take some responsibility. Losing a set of blog comments is an embarrassment but not more. Don’t cower behind your staff. If you lead, they will lead too.

In this case, your actions not only shined poorly on you, they served as a sardonic self commentary on your own article.


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