Five Principles for Making the Right Decisions Every Time

Running Time: 0:59



Bruce Weinstein

About the Trainer – Bruce Weinstein, PhD. Dr. Bruce Weinstein, known as The Ethics Guy, believes that the key to success in business is having not just emotional intelligence, but ethical intelligence, too. He is author of the award-winning book, Ethical Intelligence, and well as Is It Still Cheating If I Don’t Get Caught? In addition, he is a contributor to Bloomberg Businessweek’s Management Blog and The Huffington Post. As a media personality, Dr. Bruce Weinstein has been... Read More

Speaker: But there’s a difference between emotional intelligence and ethical intelligence. Suppose that you and I know each other fairly well, but we haven’t seen each other for a while. We meet at the mall one day and you say, “Hey Bruce, how are you doing?” And I say, “I’m fine.” I say I’m fine, but you can tell I’m anything buy fine.
What signs would give you the impression that I’m doing anything but well?

Audience: The tone of your voice.

Speaker: The tone of my voice, maybe how I’m holding my body. Yes.

Audience: Your posture.

Speaker: My posture. Perhaps I’m speaker in a softer tone than I normally do; I’m not smiling. Yes, sir.

Audience: Lack of eye contact.

Speaker: Lack of eye contact. It is your emotional intelligence that allows you to come to that conclusion, that you’re not taking this at face value. What you see is not what you get. What you see if the opposite of what you get.

But then the question becomes, what should you do. Should you say something to me at that time, “Hey Bruce are you okay?” Should you follow up with an e-mail or a phone call or say, Bruce is a big boy, he can solve the problem on his own.

Emotional intelligence cannot answer the question what should you do, because emotional intelligence is a psychological concept and what should you do is an ethical question. So you can’t answer an ethical question with a psychological concept.

What we need to turn to are the principles of ethics or ethical intelligence, so I’m here to present these five principles to you. The good news is you know them already so consider this portion a refresher course.

What we’ll do is we’ll look at the principles and then take a look at the quiz again to see if the principles can point us in the right direction. We’ll then look at several issues that present challenges to us in everyday life; talking politics at work, giving and receiving apologies, and giving and receiving criticism. And we will end by looking at some frequently asked questions about ethics and ethical intelligence.

So the first and most fundamental principle of all is…

And finally, this is your colleague Kristen, and Kristen is driving you to lunch one afternoon. At the stop light, she whips out her Blackberry and starts texting, checking her e-mail. The light turns and she continues texting.

Raise your hand if you would say to Kristen, “Please put that device away. Please put that device away.” Yes m’am, why would you do that?

Audience: Because it’s involving my life.

Speaker: Because it involves your life.

Who would not say anything to Kristen about what she’s done? Who would not say anything? Okay, a couple of people in the back.

Who would say to Kristen, “Please pull over and let me out now?” You would do that. Jerry would do that in the front, all right.

Now what have we learned by this little social experiment. What have we learned? Different people have different reactions to the same situations.

Well what if I was to ask not what would you do but what should you do? Is there a framework that you can use to determine the right thing to do no matter how other people happen to react? The answer is yes, and since the question what should you do is an ethical one, the solution lies in five basic principles of ethics.