Ethical practice - Lesson 2: your reflections

Welcome to the online community learning space for the lesson: Making responsible decisions. Use this forum to discuss the community reflective activity in the lesson. Read the contributions of others, ‘liking’ those you find helpful and add your unique reflections to the conversation by replying to this post. Click here to return to the lesson page at any time. 

Community reflective activity:
Which of the eight perspectives from the CIPD report (f
airness, merit, markets, democracy, well-being, rights and duties, character, handing down) are best suited to the values of your organisation and to your own professional values? Why is that?


  • In reply to Michelle Battista:

    If you missed the CIPD ethics webinars you can now listen to the recordings that are available on this CIPD webpage... www.cipd.co.uk/.../ethics-work-guide
  • In reply to Michelle Battista:

    If you missed the CIPD ethics webinars you can listen to the recordings that are available on this CIPD webpage... www.cipd.co.uk/.../ethics-work-guide
  • I found the three tests very useful and supported by the 8 ethical lenses in the decision making process. In terms of practice it is important to consult and discuss with all parties where practicable, as the guidelines are not "one size fits all". The organisation I used to work for had 5 core values with integrity and respective for the individual running through all our practices so that helped.
  • The 8 lenses concerning ethical decision-making, are very thought provoking and provide a sound basis for questioning whether decisions are ethical. Having said that, I found it interesting to note that there are contradictions within this framework and it may not always be possible for every decision to fulfill the criteria. Reflecting on the lenses, I felt some stuck out more than others that I consider to be innate in my own personal values yet are not always achievable.

    Fairness, 'everyone in an org should be able to agree it to,' whilst a whole-heartedly agree with this statement there are situations in restructures where people are terminated and re-engaged on different contracts that aren't always favorable to the employee; but there is a solid business justification for doing so. Democracy, 'no-one should be subject to a regime in which they have no say to,' however, often there are significant health and safety implications that mean employees need to change the way they work reluctantly. Rights/duties, 'everyone has rights to do some things and to be free of some things and everyone has duties not to violate others right,' I felt statement quite powerful which made me reflect on the grievances I have dealt with sighting bullying, discrimination and harassment that lacked the evidence to take action against the accused.

    Wellbeing has gained quite a lot of traction recently, given the pandemic and has forced Companies to really consider their employees welfare whilst at work. I hope this does not lose momentum, as restrictions are loosened and welfare remains at the forefront of the agenda.
  • As a manager of human resources, working in the GCC area, where the labour market relies on expatriates, and during my practice of recruiting candidates and sending the short lists to the managers concerned, I discovered that some managers usually exclude candidates who do not belong to their nationality, while others exclude those who are differentiated from their religion ; and by deep-rooted observation , I found this type of managers have a tendency to form a lobby of his own within the company .
    As these acts contradict the common values and ethics of business practice that related the fairness and merit, I revised the company employment application form to exclude the requestion of any information related to nationality, religion, and race; and guide the candidates to submit anonymizing CVs to avoid this aspect of human bias.
  • This lesson was really insightful for me the 3 tests - so simple but so insightful and will definitely take forward in my organisation and career.
  • I think the eight lenses are very thought provoking, and certainly offer me a clearer idea of other perspectives / positions I should consider when making decisions. Democracy and merit are standout values for me, and suit my own preferred working values. Rights and Duties are incredibly important in ensuring that ethical standards are adhered to at a minimum, but it would be nice to see businesses achieving more than what they "have" to.

    In an ideal world, fairness and markets would be across the board, however this can conflict upon individual values and business priorities. The three tests are a great way to reflect on options and potential outcomes/consequences prior to making a final decision, which in most cases will need to include a compromise for something / someone.
  • I really like that in this section it adds structure to what I'd consider common sense, however adding that structure makes it far easier to explain, making it easier to create fairness.
  • I really feel the 3 tests are things that should come naturally to us as HR professionals. I never thought of the Press being a factor as I would hope that all decisions I made would be fair and take into consideration not only the individual; but the effect on others. This has made it clear that although we may try and do that, not all decisions will be liked by everyone and taking things to the Press especially in today's society is a focus I need to be more aware of. Thanks CIPD.
  • I found the philosophical perspectives very insightful and thought provoking For our organisation I would definitely have to say that well-being and handing down most closely link to our business principles and core values. We have a heightened focus on well-being at the moment and have recently introduced a specific inclusion, diversity and well-being function into the organisation. We also have a value of 'long term thinking' which I think reflects the sentiments described in the 'handing down' perspective. Personally I can relate to fairness and merit as I always try and emulate these in everything I do.
  • I really like the three test questions to use as a simple check and challenge for myself in decision making and also other stakeholders. I also like the 8 perspectives and can see sometimes where two may seem to have equal merit.
  • When thinking back over the company I most recently worked for, the leading of the 8 tenets with which they align was merit - focusing heavily on rewarding talent and hard work.

    The point made in the course about potential contradictions was particularly relevant there; this narrow focus on hard work and talent, and a perhaps lack of consideration for well-being and rights & duties, in time created an uneven playing field, where in order to achieve the desired level of output, staff had to sacrifice both their well-being and their rights.

    This course has helped me to recognise and to more accurately describe what is causing this, and to bolster a counter argument against this type of practice with evidence and theory.