Psychology 1508: Dirty Hands

Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough we must do.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

stay pure! What good will it do? Why did you join us? Purity is an idea for a yogi or a monk… To do nothing.Leading With Dirty Hands? “How you cling to your purity. I‟ve plunged them in filth and blood. I have dirty hands. arms at your side. Right up to the elbows. Well. young man! How afraid you are to soil your hands! All right. wearing kid gloves. to remain motionless. But what do you hope? Do you think you can govern innocently?” Jean Paul Sartre  The inevitability of errors  The inevitability of wrongdoing .

challenges us in a deeper way by asking us to choose between two or more ideals in which we deeply believe.Choosing Between Right and Right “The inspirational approach [to ethics] offers little help with serious conflicts of responsibility.. A defining moment. Such challenges rarely have a „correct‟ response...” Joseph Badaracco . What to do when one clear right thing must be left undone in order to do another or when doing the right thing requires doing something wrong?” Joseph Badaracco “An ethical decision typically involves choosing between two options: one we know to be right and another we know to be wrong. however.

The Case of Honest Abe .

1994) .Choices leaders MUST make  Delivering bad news – layoffs – criticism  Remaining competitive – local manufacturing – how much to pay and to whom?  Political leadership – defining life (Terry Schiavo. etc) – just war? – Exit or Voice? (Stone. abortion.

there will not even be equality among the unfree.” Karl Popper .Making Right Versus Right Decisions Hierarchy of Values  Principled AND Flexible (Janusian)  Life and liberty as highest values (axiomatic)  “If freedom is lost.

it is that they continuously reflect back to move forward. 1973)  “If there is a hallmark characteristic of authentic and exemplary leaders.” Bruce Avolio .Making the “Right” Decision Clarify personal hierarchy of values  Take time to reflect (Batson and Darley.


Making the “Right” Decision Clarify personal hierarchy of values  Take time to reflect (Batson and Darley. 1973)  Ask questions (of self and others)  Empathize  Seek beautiful enemies  Think systemically  Courage to face the truth and pay the price  .

The Inevitable Price of Leadership The pain of wrongdoing  The pain of making mistakes  The pain of suffering rejection  .

So why do it?  The desire to make a difference! .

The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena. who. because there is no effort without error or shortcoming. knows. and who. whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood. in the end. so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat. who spends himself for a worthy cause. the triumph of high achievement. at least he fails while daring greatly. who errs and comes up short again and again. who strives valiantly. but who knows the great enthusiasms. if he fails. at the worst. the great devotions. at the best.“It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better.” Theodore Roosevelt (courtesy of Vikram) .

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