Fostering an Ethical Environment and Culture
Leaders strongly influence the ethical environment and culture of health care organizations, which, in turn, influence employee behavior. The Ethical Leadership component of IntegratedEthics® (IE) provides health care leaders with the practical tools and training they need to foster an ethical environment and culture that will make it easier for employees to "do the right thing."
The IntegratedEthics model of ethical leadership is organized around four compass points:
1. Demonstrate that ethics is a priority
2. Communicate clear expectations for ethical practice
3. Practice ethical decision making
4. Support your local ethics program
Ethical Leadership: Fostering an Ethical Environment and Culture - The primer explains the role leaders play in creating and sustaining an ethical culture in health care organizations, critical factors for success, and the specific behaviors leaders use to foster an ethical environment and culture. Intended for health care leaders at the executive and mid-manager levels.
Foglia MB, Cohen JH, Pearlman RA, Bottrell MM, Fox E. Perceptions of Ethical Leadership and the Ethical Environment and Culture: IntegratedEthics Staff Survey Data from the VA Health Care System. AJOB Primary Research, 2013. 4(1) 44-58.
Bottrell MM. Ethics Quality Helps Build Healthy Organizations. Organizational Health, 19 (Summer 2013).
IntegratedEthics Policy (VHA Handbook 1004.06)
Ethical Leadership: Fostering an Ethical Environment and Culture Video - 44-minute, interactive training video to teach viewers leadership behaviors that will help foster an ethical leadership and culture.
Tools to explain the role of the Ethical Leadership Coordinator:
Tools to support the development of ethical leadership skills:
- Ethical Leadership Bookmark 2in x 8in, 3in x 5in
- Ethical Decision-making Quality Check
- Ethical Leadership Self-Assessment Tool (ELSA)
- Ethical Leadership Tips - Double-sided tips sheet to provide leaders quick and practical information about the Four Compass Points of Ethical Leadership. Included are examples, phrases, and discussion starters that leaders may incorporate into their daily work to enhance the ethical environment and culture in their facility or program office. (*Note that the document has been formatted to allow for double sided printing.)
- EL Interview Questions Tool - Behavior-based interview questions for HPDM level 2-4 leadership candidates, corresponding to the Four Compass Points of Ethical Leadership
- Value of the Month Ethical Leadership Activities - a set of brief discussion activities that include value and discussion prompts, examples, and case studies. Intended for leaders at all levels, including committee chairs, to help employees articulate their individual values and improve mutual understanding of how values impact the work of the group or committee (editable version)
- Value of the Day Discussion - a week-long series based on the Value of the Month activity
- Value of the Day E-mail Activity - e-mail activity based on the Value of the Day Discussion
- Ethical Leadership Curriculum (Faculty Guide) - based on the ethical leadership compass, this training curriculum is intended to help leaders develop new skills and behaviors consistent with ethical leadership. Includes slides, activities, and handouts for facilitators and participants.
- Ethical Leadership: Quick Activities - a series of 15-minute activities that can be used to highlight and practice strong ethical leadership behaviors over a series of leadership meetings
Talk About Ethics - an activity and activity guide for all staff members to help them consider how they "talk about ethics" and to encourage discussion with their colleagues
Ethics Discussion Activities - using journal articles and media examples, activities prompt group discussion of ethical leadership concepts
- Managing for Organizational Integrity - a March 1994 Harvard Business Review article by Lynn Sharp
- Psychology of Fraud: Why Good People Do Bad Things - a May 2012 presentation on NPR by Chana Joffe-Walt and Alix Spiegel (NPR article and presentation)
- Reward and Discipline - (Un)Ethical Behavior in Organizations by Linda Klebe Treviño
- Peer and Leader Influence - (Un)Ethical Behavior in Organizations by Linda Klebe Treviño
- Moral Disengagement - (Un)Ethical Behavior in Organizations by Linda Klebe Treviño
- Decision Frames - (Un)Ethical Behavior in Organizations by Linda Klebe Treviño
Tear Sheets on Ethical Leadership from IntegratedEthics in Action – Articles highlight decisions, processes, and activities to help leaders of health care organizations foster an ethical environment and culture. Tear sheets can be used as educational emails, reprints in local or facility newsletters, or discussion topics for meetings.
Tools to improve plans to strengthen an organization's environment and culture:
IE Archive: Materials used in initial launch of VA IE program
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