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Why Modern Meritocracy Is Broken

If the 2016 election felt like a polarizing set of choices for American voters, the upcoming election makes that one look almost benign. Never has America been more divided as we struggle through a pandemic, trying to put people back to work whose jobs were impacted by it and to maintain civil peace as people […]

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6 Ways to Rationally Deal with Your Rotten Boss

“He literally pitched my idea to the client as if it was his…right in front of me! I’d helped him build the presentation for weeks prior to delivering it to the client. He’s so worried about keeping his own job that he’ll stop at nothing to save his own a**, even if that means running […]

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How to Avoid Fueling Affective Polarization

Another contentious election year is upon us, and the political machines fueling mutual contempt across the aisle are heating up. On top of our political divide, the past weeks have shown us the ugliness of just how racially divided we remain as a nation. The heartbreaking events in Minneapolis last month revealed again how today’s contemptuous […]

How Leaders Help People Find Real Hope in the Face of a Pandemic

Like many leaders, my clients are scrambling to adapt to this new “virtual reality” of uncertainty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. And now physical distancing will continue through the end of April. In the face of not knowing how best to communicate with their people—what to say, how to say it, when to say it—they […]

What She Learned Leading Microsoft’s Culture Change

One of the most successful culture transformations, at a company with over 140,000 employees, is unfolding before our eyes. Microsoft’s Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella has written about this journey in Hit Refresh: The Quest to Rediscover Microsoft’s Soul and Imagine a Better Future for Everyone, and Chief People Officer Kathleen Hogan has shared early insights on progress. […]

How This Acclaimed Entrepreneur Built an Honest Company from the Ground Up

As headlines barrage us with news of once-beloved companies turned crooked, I’ve wondered: Are the strongest ethical companies those that have embedded systems in their DNA that promote a culture of honesty from the start? Business communication company Nextiva offers an example of an organization that incorporated systems that promote integrity from its inception. I spoke with co-founder […]

Featured Ethics [and Leadership] Scholar for March: Ron Carucci

Interview with Ron Carucci, author, leadership consultant and cofounder / managing partner at Navalent

What are your main areas of research/work?

My colleagues and I at Navalent spend our days working with organizations pursuing dramatic change.  That could be changes in strategy, re designs of organizations, or strengthening of leadership capability. Our writing and research focuses on those same areas – we see our intellectual capital as the opportunity to learn on behalf of the clients we serve.

 

How does strengthening leadership help reduce ethical misconduct in companies?

If you think about the nature of many ethical misconduct, they can often emanate from previously undiscovered character flaws that get exposed when leaders are pressured in broader roles.  Preparing leaders early in their careers to assume increasingly bigger jobs can help reduce the likelihood that the challenges of power and resources, political rivalries, or intensified performance pressures won’t drive leaders to make short-sighted, unethical choices.