I am a professor in the Management and Organizations Area at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan. I conduct research on how to make organizations more ethical with a particular emphasis on ethical climate/culture, ethical leadership, and ethical decision making.
Ethical Systems Interview (July/August 2015)
My Approach to Ethical Systems:
My research takes seriously the notion that the social context in organizations plays a large in determining whether employees will be unethical or prosocial.
Although we often tend to believe that organizations are filled with “bad apples” who are simply unethical people and “good eggs” who regularly engage in prosocial behavior, my work echoes the findings from classical work in social psychology that the context in organizations matters a lot. In my work I examine the influence of the organizational context (e.g., ethical climate, ethical leadership, ethical behavior of peers) on employees’ behavior.
Also, in addition to understanding why people are bad in organizations, I also explore how to promote prosocial behavior to create virtuous organizations.
My Ethical Systems Research page: Leadership
My Major Relevant Publications:
- Why You Should Encourage Employees to Display Family Photos at Work Harvard Business Review (2020)
- Why Rich Parents Are More Likely to Be Unethical The Conversation (2019)
- To Get Companies to Take Action on Social Issues, Emphasize Morals Not the Business Case Harvard Business Review (2019)
- Urban Meyer, Ohio State Football, and How Leaders Ignore Unethical Behavior Harvard Business Review (2018)
- Why Leading By Example Isn’t Always Enough Fast Company (2015)
- Why You Overrate High Performance at Work Fast Company (2015)
- Is Business Ethics an Oxymoron? Fast Company (2015)
- Microaggressions: Driving talent away from your business, Fortune (2015) [interview]
- Deflategate shows NFL must fix weak links in system, New York Daily News (2015) [quoted as expert]
- Why do Whistle-Blowers Become Whistle-Blowers, NPR (2013).
- “Show me the … family: How photos of meaningful relationships reduce unethical behavior at work,” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes (2020)
- “Creating an ethical organizational environment: The relationship between ethical leadership, ethical organizational climate, and unethical behavior,” Personnel Psychology (2019)
- “The Money or the Morals? When Moral Language Is More Effective for Selling Social Issues,” Journal of Applied Psychology (2019)
- “Leaders Matter Morally: The Role of Ethical Leadership in Shaping Employee Moral Cognition and Misconduct,” Journal of Applied Psychology (2019)
- “Encouraging employees to report unethical conduct internally: It takes a village,” article in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes (2013).
- “Who displays ethical leadership and why does it matter? An examination of antecedents and consequences of ethical leadership,” article in Academy of Management Journal (2012).
- “How low does ethical leadership flow? Test of a trickle-down model,” article in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes (2009).