I’m beginning to think that organizations that are really committed to their ethics, really need to go back to basics by studying the great thinkers on ethics, i.e. Aristotle, Plato, Socrates, Immanuel Kant, Thomas Aquinas, as a prerequisite to ethics training. Why you may ask? For two reasons, first, if one doesn’t know the time honored basics of ethics, how can one apply them? Second, most ethics training now seems to be more tied to compliance rather than ethics as a stand alone program.
I envision this being a four hour interactive course highlighting the key concepts of the great thinkers, as their theories apply to the workplace issues. This would be program that would refresh people’s learning on these thinkers or introduce people to them!
If people are educated in the categorical imperative, utilitarianism, virtue, the good life, etc. wouldn’t it provide people with a strong, quality basis for continuing their ethics education?
Like in anything else you learn, you need to know the basics before you can move on to the next level of training.
So why won’t this suggestion probably, ”see the light of day?” Organizations may not want to include in this type of program in their training budget and who would do the training? I guess it’s all about priorities.
We need to tap the wisdom of those who have gone before us to give us insights into how to make those tough decisions today.
I just think this is an idea that needs some serious consideration and dialogue.