Our entire education in ethical decision making when we joined the fire service was based on the "headline test," when we were told that we should judge our actions on whether we would want to see them on the front page of tomorrow's newspaper. Unfortunately, we can see from today's actual headlines that we are falling short in teaching our firefighters how to behave like true public servants. Using real-life examples, this class will focus on more in-depth methods of analyzing ethical choices than merely headlines, and attendees will be given tools to help evaluate consequences, enabling them to make better decisions in the future. In addition, attendees will be able to take these tools to their own departments and personnel.
Attendees will learn different ethical tests and how to apply them to real-life examples in order to see that problematic courses of action could have been prevented by a series of questions.
Attendees will apply twelve questions toward ethical decision making as defined by Harvard Business School professor Laura Nash. These questions will help participants identify ethical grey areas.
Attendees will learn how to create a decision tree in order to analyze whether a course of action is ethical and how to personalize that decision tree for their own departments.
The consequences of unethical actions are enormous for the fire service, and include litigation, loss of public trust, and the degradation of our cultural identity. Yet firefighters in our departments continue to make decisions that violate our core values. How do we teach ethical decision making to the next generation? How do we learn to make consistently better decisions ourselves?
The relevance of making good decisions has become increasingly apparent with the advent of social media and the instant broadcasting of information it provides. We can no longer trust our traditional measuring stick of ethical decision making; weighing actions against the "headline test" does not go deep enough in teaching the next generation how we expect them to behave. There are better ethical tests that we can use to evaluate decisions and actions, tests which give us more consistency in problem solving. These tests are based on consequences of actions and how they affect public trust and create cultural ambiguity, problems which are much greater than short-lived headlines.
Firefighters are action-oriented and willing to do the right thing, but as Lyndon B. Johnson said, "Doing what is right isn't the problem. It is knowing what is right." This session will give participants the tools to develop a personalized ethical tree against which to measure decisions and the abilities to monitor the effects of those decisions in order to confirm moral conduct.
Participants will gain an understanding of how seemingly benign ethical lapses influence the ethical culture at both the company and organizational levels, and identify the "shades of gray" that exist within their own organization's ethical culture and ways to shape it.
Participants will learn different ethical tests and how to apply them to real-life examples in order to see that problematic courses of action could have been prevented by a series of questions.
Participants will apply twelve questions toward ethical decision making as defined by Harvard Business School professor Laura Nash. These questions will help participants identify ethical grey areas.
Participants will learn how to apply a “decision tree” in order to analyze whether a course of action is ethical and how to personalize that decision tree for their own departments.