Boss asks you to do something unethical
boss asks you to do something unethical
Most employees try to be as accommodating as possible when it comes to requests from their bosses. For instance, they will take on extra work, perform tasks not in their job description and will even attend events that interfere with family functions. But there are times during your employment when saying “no” to a boss is essential, especially if that boss is a bully.
According to a study by researchers at The Ohio State University and the University of Georgia, employees that stand up for themselves not only feel less like a victim but also tend to feel more committed to their job and satisfied overall.
Some ideas to consider if you ever find yourself in this predicament:
The Federal False Claims Act allows whistle-blowers to collect a portion of any financial settlement the government collects when misconduct is reported – like if a hospital or health care provider, for example, is submitting false claims to Medicare.
Your moral symbol should be authentic, so be sure your symbol is something that meaningfully represents your values. If you display a moral symbol inauthentically, you will send the wrong message. Next, be sure to display it so that it is easily visible to others. Lastly, choose a symbol that is respectful of others in the workplace. Don’t underestimate the importance of picking your symbol carefully and knowing your audience. While your moral symbol is about you, it should still show respect for others.
Deloitte US CEO Joe Ucuzoglu describes what it takes to lead in the Fourth Industrial Revolution
Weekly Challenge — Your Personal Leadership: we are all responsible for our own choices and for how we influence people. Take a look at any upcoming problems or challenges and do some risk mitigation planning to handle them with integrity and honesty for everyone involved. Ask yourself if your mother would be proud that you handled it that way.
Standing Up to Your Boss: Be Respectful, But Assertive.
This is your career; you have to live with your choices for a lifetime. “And depending on the situation, it might adversely affect others’ lives, too,” says Taylor.
After getting an unethical assignment or task, you may suddenly lose respect and trust for your boss and/or employer. “Without trust, you’ll perform sub-par; question your boss’s motives; may be concerned about the company’s long-term prospects; and invite unnecessary anxiety in your career,” Taylor warns.
So, what the heck do you say? Well, it depends on the situation.
So, what do you do? Obviously, because it’s your boss, you feel pressured to enthusiastically agree to every direction and demand. But, your moral compass is causing your stomach to twist into knots.
A recent New York Times article gave the benefit of the doubt to the manager: perhaps your boss made the unethical request unwittingly. Similarly, a BusinessInsider.com article warned of the importance in making sure that you fully understand the situation surrounding your boss’s unethical request.
Organizations are beginning to demand a higher level of ethics in their employees’ conduct. Despite demanding that all employees read and sign the organization’s corporate ethics and compliance policy, the projected moral and legal commitments may not materialize.
Maybe you’re asked to mislead a customer. Maybe you’re told to lie to a client, or take a shortcut you know would produce an inferior product.
No one wants it to come to this, and it may not be practical advice if you need the paycheck. But if you’re in position to find another job, this might be good reason to head for the door.
Do you face a complex interpersonal situation? Send it in, anonymously if you like, and I’ll give you my two cents.
Staying in connection with those who make us feel ethically uncomfortable is difficult. Here are four strategies.
However, when your boss asks you to do something unethical or illegal, you face one of the most challenging dilemmas in your career.
- Appeal to their better angels. Most of us like to believe that we are essentially decent people. We hate the dissonance we feel when we become aware that our behaviour is inconsistent with our best selves. Highlighting what seems fair and decent can help to increase this dissonance.