- Contest 12222
- Belmont sife ethics essay contest
- Do you have the "write" stuff?
- Becky blanton the monster essay
- Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE)
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Belmont University has been recognized at No. Nominations for this list were Related Articles - People. We discuss moral development more fully in Chapter 7.
Thus, from a practical standpoint, it might be time for organizations to consider that being ethical means considering the needs of others as well. Finally, ethics is more than simply following the letter of the law.
It is a fallacy to assume that everything that is legal is also morally correct; it is equally problematic to presume that everything you consider to be ethical must therefore be legal. Law and morality are related, but they are certainly not the same thing. Organizations that follow the letter of the law and nothing more are clearly looking out for their own needs, without considering the possibility that their responsibility to their communities might be morally rather than simply legally dictated.
What they ought to do might be considerably more than what they must do. Philosophers define ethics as the study of moral rightness or wrongness, which is limited by the human ability to reason. Our decisions are only as good as our human reasoning abilities.
Whereas philosophers have the luxury of simply studying these issues, as professionals we need to be able actually to apply aspects of philosophical rumination. In practical terms, someone once defined ethical decisionmaking as drawing a black line through that grey area I mentioned in the preface.
The area will always remain grey but at some point each of us has to draw that line. As you will see, there are few clear-cut solutions to ethical dilemmas, but as a professional it is your responsibility to determine what might be the right place to draw that line. It is clear that the concept of professionalism is closely tied to ethics — professional ethics to be more precise. But what is this elusive notion of professionalism? How important is it? And, closest to home, how do you cultivate it?
Who cares if the public views public relations as a profession, an occupation, a vocation or just a job? Evidently, public relations associations do. That, however, is quite a separate argument. For now, it seems important to a lot of people within our field that it be seen as a profession. It is clearly a part of our image. Where does that leave all those people whose occupations do not seem to display those characteristics of a profession?
Belmont sife ethics essay contest
Can they not be deemed to have a high level of professionalism? What about that waiter at your favourite restaurant whose professionalism shines through in the way he treats you and his other customers? What about your cleaning lady whose pride in the quality of her work always makes you think that she shows great professionalism? One need only read the newspaper every day to see examples of such individuals. But professionalism is more than this.
Is that not what integrity and the application of your ethical standards are all about? Of course it is. In his book True Professionalism: The courage to care about your people, your clients, and your career, writer David Maister suggests that… … professionalism is predominantly an attitude, not a set of competencies Rather it implies pride in work, a commitment to quality, a dedication to the interests of the client, and a sincere desire to help.
Figure 1. Do you always treat people you work with including bosses, clients, people you manage with the respect you expect to be afforded? Are you courteous in your communication even on the phone and in e-mail with others? Do you do every assigned task to the best of your ability? Do you do what you know to be right from a moral perspective? I read the trade literature c I read stuff when I get a chance d Why should I?
You would be a good role model for neophyte public relations practitioners. Most employers would be proud to have you on their staff. Sometimes just being aware of your shortcomings can move you toward fixing them.
Do you have the "write" stuff?
Professionalism is key to personal ethics. That is what we are about to discover together. Notes 1. Whom, exactly, was he talking about? And who can blame them when this is the media image that is cultivated? This raises two questions.
Becky blanton the monster essay
First, is the public really so wrong? And second, what part does truth telling play in the ethical foundations of public relations? This has become a fact of the modern human condition. And you need not protest your own absolute honesty. You have your reasons for behaving this way, you say, and you might even find an ethicist or two who can accept your motivation for such dishonesty.
Clearly, we all draw the line both personally and professionally. There are some lies we will tell, whereas there are others that seem just beyond the pale. What is unclear is the difference between that little lie that seems so unimportant at the time and the important ones that have significant consequences. The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth seems relegated to the courtroom oath.
Most recognized religions, where many of us receive our first introduction to values, expound on the requirement to tell the truth. The Ten Commandments taught many PR professionals their first lesson in truth telling. Most other religious traditions, however, also have guidelines regarding the virtue of telling the truth. Codes of ethics of professional associations of public relations practitioners provide chapter and verse on the need for the truth.
Defining what the truth is in public relations, just as in other aspects of our lives, however, is a challenge. Defining the truth is clearly the challenge.
A public relations researcher at Florida International University tried to do just that. Being misleading or even evasive is a different story, however. The truth or lack thereof in these situations is less clear.
Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE)
There is one situation in which it seems that telling the whole truth is not the most ethical course of action. If telling the truth outright is likely to harm one or more publics, then it is reasonable to conclude that it is probably more ethical to avoid full disclosure. Often, however, the distinction about whether truth or harm trumps the other requires a judgement call; it is the application of such judgement that calls upon the ethical maturity and development of the decision-maker. This spurious comparison often surfaces when PR practitioners wish to justify questionable behaviour.
It is a widely held principle in civilized cultures that everyone has the right to legal representation. Perhaps it is even an important principle that everyone has a right to have professional public relations counsel to make his or her voice heard in the arena of public communication, thus facilitating access.