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Organizational Ethics

Organizational Ethics
A Practical Approach

Fourth Edition
Additional resources:

February 2018 | 480 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Every industry must confront unethical behavior in the workplace. Whether your students want to pursue careers in business, education, public service, or the military, they will need a solid foundational understanding of ethics and the impact their decisions will have on their organizations and their own lives.

Organizational Ethics: A Practical Approach
equips students with the knowledge and skills they need to make a positive difference in their workplace. Self-assessments, reflection opportunities, and application projects allow students to practice their ethical reasoning abilities. Each part of the book focuses on a different aspect of ethical organizational behavior, examining ethics at the individual, group, and organizational levels. The revised Fourth Edition includes a new feature titled Contemporary Issues in Organizational Ethics and new case studies on current topics such as fake news, sexual harassment, and cultural appropriation. This book shows how readers can develop their ethical expertise and provides opportunities to practice problem-solving to defend their decisions.

List of Case Studies, Self-Assessments, Ethical Checkpoints, and Contemporary Issues in Organizational Ethics
Introduction: Making the Case for Studying Organizational Ethics
About the Author
CHAPTER 1. Ethical Competencies and Perspectives
Developing Ethical Competencies  
Defining Organizational Ethics  
Ethical Perspectives  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 2. Components of Personal Ethical Development
Component 1: Discovering Vocation  
Component 2: Identifying Personal Values  
Component 3: Developing Character  
Component 4: Creating a Moral Identity  
Component 5: Drawing Upon Spiritual Resources  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 3. Ethical Decision Making and Action
Components of Ethical Behavior  
Decision-Making Formats  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 4. Ethical Interpersonal Communication
Dialogue: An Ethical Framework for Interpersonal Communication  
Ethical Communication Competencies  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 5. Exercising Ethical Influence
Questions of Power  
Ethical Issues in Influence  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 6. Ethical Conflict Management
Conflict in Organizational Life  
Becoming an Ethical Conflict Manager  
Resolving Conflict Through Ethical Negotiation  
Combating Aggression and Sexual Harassment  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 7. Leadership and Followership Ethics
Ethical Leadership  
Ethical Followership  
Meeting the Moral Demands of Followership: Principles and Strategies  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 8. Improving Group Ethical Performance
Acting as a Morally Responsible Team Member  
Responding to Ethical Danger Signs  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 9. Building an Ethical Organization
Making Ethics Matter  
Components of Ethical Culture  
Cultural Change Efforts  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 10. Ethical Marketing, Finance, Accounting, and Human Resource Management
Ethical Marketing  
Ethical Finance and Accounting  
Ethical Human Resource Management  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 11. Promoting Organizational Citizenship
The Organization as Citizen  
Promoting Organizational Citizenship  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  
CHAPTER 12. Ethics in a Global Society
The Dangers of Globalization and the Challenges of Ethical Diversity  
Developing Cross-Cultural Ethical Competence  
Chapter Takeaways  
Application Projects  


Instructor Resource Site

An Instructor Teaching Site (Password protected) supports your teaching by making it easy to integrate quality content and create a rich learning environment for students.

  • Microsoft® Word® test bank is available containing multiple choice, true/false, and essay questions for each chapter. The test bank provides you with a diverse range of pre-written options as well as the opportunity for editing any question and/or inserting your own personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding.
  • An ExamView electronic test bank is available and can be used on PCs. The test bank contains multiple choice, true/false and essay questions for each chapter and provides you with a diverse range of pre-written options as well as the opportunity for editing any question and/or inserting your own personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding. ExamView is also compatible with many popular learning management systems so you can easily get your test questions into your online course.
  • Editable, chapter-specific Microsoft® PowerPoint® slides offer you complete flexibility in easily creating a multimedia presentation for your course.
  • Lecture notes summarize key concepts on a chapter-by-chapter basis to help with preparation for lectures and class discussions.
  • Sample course syllabi for semester and quarter courses provide suggested models for use when creating the syllabi for your courses.
  • Case notes include synopses, analyses, learning objectives, and discussion guides to assist with case-based teaching.
  • Teaching strategies, including suggestions for additional readings, provide a jumping-off point for course assignments, papers, research, group work, and class discussion.
  • Carefully selected, web-based video links feature content for use in independent or classroom-based explorations of key topics. When relevant, related questions for discussion are included.
  • Chapter-specific discussion questions help launch classroom interaction by prompting students to engage with the material and by reinforcing important content. 

“[This is] a well-written text book that provides undergraduate students a basic understanding of workplace ethics and one that provides faculty numerous ancillary ideas for creating an engaging course.” 

Denise M. Cumberland
University of Louisville

“A very student-based, skill-building, introspective, and action-based approach to ethical decision-making that is more personal and practical.”

Joe Gerard
Western New England University

“An excellent, practical, student-centered, introductory organizational ethics text for undergraduates.” 

Glen E. Chapuis
Saint Charles Community College

“[This] is a very applied textbook that helps students become better ethical decision makers.”

John Tichenor
Stetson University

“An easy to read and compelling overview of ethics in the organizational context.” 

Joel T. Mackey
University of San Francisco

“This is an excellent text that succeeds in being intellectually rigorous, philosophically insightful, and well-grounded in psychology and the social sciences. If you are considering any change in the textbook you use for your business ethics course, I would recommend Organizational Ethics.”

Robert Bass
Thomas Edison State University

“Versatile, easy-to-read, equipped with plentiful instructor resources, and comprehensive in the discipline.”

Kathryn Woods
Austin Peay State University

“Very complete ethics coverage from personal to corporate. Up-to-date illustrations. Wide variety of methods used and available to introduce the material.” 

Pam Meyer
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Key features


  • Fifteen new case studies provide exposure to current and relatable topics for students that focus on recent events, such as: 
    • Facebook’s effort to reduce fake news
    • sexual assault on college campuses and in the military
    • the end of Barnum & Bailey circus
    • Uber’s missteps
    • computer hacking 
  • An all new Contemporary Issues in Organizational Ethics feature introduces new developments and controversies in the field to spark critical thinking and debate.


  • Three topical cases in each chapter feature a range of relevant organizations and focus on important issues like sexual harassment, bullying, and toxic organizational cultures.   
  • Two self-assessment questionnaires in each chapter allow students to reflect upon their personal values, styles, and preferences.   
  • Chapter Takeaways and Applications Projects in each chapter help readers engage in further reflection, analysis, and implementation.

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