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Project  HEADWAY

Webinar Mark  Mullaly  is  t he  host  f or  


today’s  webinar.  Mark  is  a  
management  c onsultant  with  
Ethics  &  the  Project  Manager: more  than  25  years  of  
A  Critique project  management  
experience.

He  brings  a  wealth  of  


Mark  Mullaly,  Ph.D.,  PMP experience  in  managing  
mark.mullaly@interthink.ca projects  in  a  broad  array  of  
@markmullaly sectors  and  industries.

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We  will  be  starting  at  3:00  PM  EST
Webinar  Objectives

§ Explore  The  Implications  Of  Ethical  Behavior

§ Examine  What  Is  Expected  Of  Project  Managers

§ Develop  Practical  Strategies  For  Project  


Management  Ethics

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Webinar  Process  – Things  to  Know

§ This  Is  An  AdobeConnect Presentation


• PowerPoint
• Computer-­based   audio  stream
§ Problems   or  Help?
• Heather   -­ heather@projectmanagement.com
§ Questions?  
• Submit  a  question   in  the  Q&A  box
• Questions  will  be  answered  during  the  Q&A  session
• We  may  not  be  able  to  answer  all  questions
§ This  Presentation   Will   Be  Recorded   for  Future  
Reference
§ PDUs

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Agenda

§ Introduction
§ Defining  Our  Terms
§ The  Implications  Of  Ethical  Behavior
§ Ethical  Expectations  Of  Project  Managers
§ Practical  Strategies  For  Project  Management  
Ethics
§ Question  &  Answer  Session

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Defining  Our  Terms

Ethics

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Defining  ’Ethics'

§ ’Ethics'   Means:
• The  discipline  dealing  with  what  is  good  and  bad  and  with  
moral  duty  and  obligation
• A  set  of  moral  principles
• A  theory  or  system  of  moral  values
• The  principles   of  conduct  governing   an  individual   or  a  group
• A guiding   philosophy
• A consciousness   of  moral  importance
• A set  of  moral  issues  or  aspects   (as  rightness)

§ Source:  merriam-­webster.com
• Definition  taken  on  13  February   2016

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What  Does  The  PMBOK  Have  To  Say?

§ Not  Much

§ There  Is  A  Contextual   Expectation


• PMs  will  need  to  adhere  to  organizational   standards   and  
policies,  including:
• Human  resource  policies
• Health   and  safety  policies
• Ethics  policies
• Project  management   policies

§ Every  Other  Reference  Is  To  The  PMI  Code  of  Ethics  
and  Professional   Conduct

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PMI’s  Definition  Of  Ethics

§ Isn’t  Actually  Articulated

§ It  Describes  “the  expectations   that  we  have  of  our  


fellow  practitioners…”
• “The  ideals  to  which  we  aspire…”
• “The  behaviors   that  are  mandatory…”

§ These  Are  Defined  Across  Categories:


• Responsibility
• Respect
• Fairness
• Honesty
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The  Implications  Of  Ethical  Behavior

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Expectation  Of  Ethical  Behavior

§ If  We  Revisit  The  Definition  Of  Ethics…


• Presumption  of  right  and  wrong  behavior
• Guidance  for  what  is  acceptable
• Delineation  of  unacceptable  actions  or  expectations

§ Definition  Implies  Hard  Edges  To  Definition


• There  is  a  ‘right’  and  there  is  a  ‘wrong’

§ Practical  Reality  Is  Much  Greyer


• Strongly  subjective  elements  in  play
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Acting  Ethically

§ Ethical  Action  Requires:


• Understanding  ethical  principles
• In  essence,  where  is  the  bar  of  ethical  behavior  set?
• Interpreting  situation
• On  what  side  of  the  bar  does  a  situation  occur?
• Choosing  a  course  of  action
• How  should  we/will  we  respond  in  the  situation?
• Implementing  the  course  of  action
• Effectively  realizing  the  results  of  the  chosen  path

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Challenges  Of  Ethical  Action

§ Defining  Where  The  Bar  Is  Set


• Defined   by:
• Broader   culture
• National  laws
• Local  conventions
• Organizational   policies,  rules  and   practices
• Personal  values,  beliefs  and   awareness

§ Interpreting  A  Situation
• Understanding   what  side  of  the  line  it  occurs
• Often  subjective   and  open   to  interpretation

§ Determining  Choices

§ Taking  Action
• Having   the  courage   of  our  convictions
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Ethical  Challenges

§ Consider  The  Following  Scenarios:


• You  Are  Asked  To  Sign  For  Acceptance  And  Delivery  Of  
Equipment  That  Has  Not  Actually  Been  Provided

• You  Are  Told  To  Have  Your  Staff  Change  Their  


Timesheets  So  That  Reported  Time  Is  Within  Regulated  
Safe  Work  Amounts

• You  Are  Asked  To  Make  A  Quick  Repair,  Where  Doing  


So  Would  Involve  Not  Using  The  Right  Safety  Equipment

• You  Are  Asked  To  Pay  A  ‘Processing  Fee’  To  Have  Your  
Proposal  Favorably  Reviewed
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Some  Scenarios  Are  Less  Obvious

§ Consider
• You  are  asked   to  change   the  time  reporting  on  an  activity  
so  it  is  completed   ‘on  time’

• Your  sponsor   instructs  you  to  change   the  status  report  


from  ‘red’  to  ‘yellow’  (or  ‘green’)

• You  are  asked   to  exclude  specific  cost  estimates  from  a  


business   case

• You  are  asked   to  sit  in  on  a  meeting,  ”but  let  me  do  the  
talking”
• A  key  issue   about  your  project  is  downplayed   or  not  
addressed

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Ethical  Expectations  Of  Project  Managers

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PMI  Code  of  Ethics  &
Professional  Conduct
§ Describes  Expectations  For  Project  Management  
Practitioners
§ Goal
• To  assist  you  in  making  difficult  decisions
• To  encourage  confidence  in  the  larger  PM  profession
§ Applies  To:
• PMI  members
• Non-­members  who  hold  PMI  certifications
• Applicants  for  PMI  certifications
• Volunteers  for  PMI

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Four  Core  Values

§ Values
• Responsibility
• Respect
• Fairness
• Honesty
§ Categories
• Aspiration  standards
• Guide  Your  Actions
• Mandatory  behaviours
• Limited  or  prohibited  behaviours
• Grounds  for  disciplinary  actions

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Responsibility

§ Definition
• “Responsibility  is  our duty  to  take  ownership  for  the  
decisions  we  make  or  fail  to  make,  the  actions we  take  
or  fail  to  take,  and  the  consequences  that  result."

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Responsibility  -­ Aspirational

§ Take  Actions  In  Best  Interests  Of  Others


• Defined  broadly
§ Accept  Assignments  Consistent  With  Your  Skills  
And  Abilities
§ Fulfill  Commitments
§ Take  Ownership  Of  Errors  &  Omissions
• Take  corrective  action  promptly
§ Protect  Proprietary  Information  &  Intellectual  
Property
§ Uphold  And  Hold  Others  Accountable  To  Code
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Responsibility  -­ Mandatory

§ Educate  Yourself  On  Laws,  Rules,  Regulations


§ You  Will  Not  Engage  In  Illegal  Behavior  
• Fraud
• Theft
• Corruption
• Bribery
• Libel  and  slander
• etc.  
§ Report  Illegal  Behavior
§ You  Won't  Falsely  Accuse  Others  Of  Wrongdoing

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Respect

§ Definition
• "Respect  is  our duty  to  show  a  high  regard  for  
ourselves,  others,  and  the resources  entrusted  to  us.  
Resources  entrusted  to  us  may  include people,  money,  
reputation,  the  safety  of  others,  and  natural  or
environmental  resources."

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Respect  -­ Aspirational

§ Educate  Yourself  On  Norms  And  Cultures


§ Avoid  Disrespectful  Behaviours
§ Listen  Openly  To  Others
§ Approach  Others  Directly  When  You  Have  A  
Conflict  Or  Disagreement
§ Conduct  Yourself  In  A  Professional  Manner
• Even  when  it  is  not  reciprocated

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Respect  -­ Mandatory

§ Negotiate  In  Good  Faith


§ Do  Not  Exercise  Your  Power  Or  Position  To  
Benefit  Personally
§ Do  Not  Abuse  Others
§ Respect  The  Property  Rights  Of  Others

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Fairness

§ Definition
• "Fairness  is  our duty  to  make  decisions  and  act  
impartially  and  objectively.  Our  conduct  must  be  free  
from  competing  self  interest,  prejudice,  and  favoritism."

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Fairness  -­ Aspirational

§ Transparency  In  Decision-­making


§ Objectivity  And  Impartiality
§ Provide  Equal  Access  to  Information  If  They  Have  
Authorization
§ Provide  Equal  Opportunities  To  All  Qualified  
Candidates

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Fairness  – Mandatory

§ Disclose  Conflicts  Of  Interest


§ When  Real/Apparent  Conflict  Of  Interests  Exists
• Decline  from  participating  until:
• You  have  made  full  disclosure
• Put  in  place  a  mitigation  plan
• Obtained  agreement  from  all  stakeholders  to  proceed
§ No  Discrimination
§ Will  Not  Make  Decisions  Based  On  Favoritism,  
Nepotism  Or  Bribery
§ You  Will  Apply  The  Rules  Of  Your  Organization  
Without  Favoritism  Or  Prejudice
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Honesty

§ Definition
• "Honesty  is  our  duty  to  understand  the  truth  and  act  in  a  
truthful  manner  both  in  our communications  and  in  our  
conduct."

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Honesty  -­ Aspirational

§ Seek  To  Understand  The  Truth


§ Be  Honest  In  All  Your  Communications
§ Provide  Communications  In  Timely  Manner
§ Make  Commitments  In  Good  Faith
§ Strive  To  Create  An  Open  And  Honest  
Environment

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Honesty  -­ Mandatory

§ Not  Engage  In  Deceitful  Or  Deceptive  Behavior


• Including:
• Half-­truths
• Information  out  of  context
• Omissions
§ Not  Engage  In  Dishonest  Behaviors  For  Personal  
Gain
• Or  at  the  expense  of  another

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Practical  Strategies  For  Project  Management  
Ethics

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Educate  Ourselves

§ To  Behave  Ethically,   We  Need  To  Understand   Ethical  


Expectations

§ Ethical   Expectations   Are  Shaped   By:


• Laws  – national,  state/provincial  and  municipal
• Regulations   – industry  or  professional
• Organizational  policies,  procedures   and  practices
• Cultural  principles  and  values
• Social  conventions
• Accepted   practices   and  approaches

§ These  Will  Not  Always  Overlap


• Some  may,  in  fact,  conflict
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Exercise  Judgement

§ Test  For  Explicit  Expectations


• Something  is  specifically   prescribed  or  prohibited

§ Test  For  Reasonability


• Something  makes  sense  to  do  or  not  do  in  the  context  of  ethical  
expectations

§ Test  For  Interpretation


• Our  interpretation   and  understanding   of  the  situation  is  correct

§ Test  For  Appropriateness


• The  proposed  action  is  likely  to  lead  to  the  desired  outcome

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Taking  Action

§ The  Greatest  Challenge  Can  Be  Taking  Action

§ We  Don’t  Want  To  Disappoint


• Having  the  courage  to  do  something  that  will  not  be  well  received

§ We  Want  To  Be  Successful


• Taking  action  may  undermine  (or  make  visible)  problems

§ We  Anticipate/Fear  The  Consequences


• We  value  our  job,  status  or  standing  with  the  organization

§ We  Don’t  Know  The  Best  Way  To  Act


• We  struggle  with  how  to  approach  or  handle  the  conversation  we  
need  to  have
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Negotiating  Our  Approach

§ Negotiation   Strategies   Provide   Guidance   About  How  


To  Approach   Situations

§ Adopt  A  Process  Of  Escalating   Engagement


• Help  them  to  understand   the  consequences   to  them  
personally
• They  may  be  unaware   of  the  details  or  implications
• Articulate  potential  consequences   more  broadly
• Consider   the  possible   implications   of  the  worst-­case  
scenario
• Say  ‘no’
• Politely   but  firmly  refuse  to  engage   in  unethical   action
• Say  ‘no’  publicly
• Make  your  refusal  visible   (internally   or  externally)
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Test  For  Ethical  Action

§ Knowing  How  To  Proceed


• How  do  we  know  we  are  being  ethical?
• How  do  we  make  a  good  decision  with  imperfect  
information?
• How  do  we  know  what  to  do  when  we  don’t  know  what  
will  happen?

§ Making  Ethical  Decisions:


• The  only  way  to  consistently  make  the  right  decision  is  
to  go  with  the  one  you  can  justify  regardless  of  the  
outcome

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In  Conclusion…

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In  Conclusion…
§ Ethics  Is  Not  Black  And  White
• We  are  needing  to  navigate  shades  of  grey
• Determining  where  the  line  is  drawn  is  subjective
• Judging  whether  a  situation  crosses  the  line  requires  interpretation  
and  context
• Interpretation  is  in  part  a  product  of  motive  and  intent
§ Taking  Ethical  Action  Is  Often  Difficult  To  Do
• We  struggle  with  how  to  appropriately   approach  or  respond
• We  fear  the  potential  consequences   of  our  response
§ Each  Of  Us  Needs  To  Develop  Strategies  For  Ethical  Action
• Educating  ourselves  broadly  on  laws,  culture  and  conventions
• Exercising  appropriate   judgement  in  interpreting  situations
• Acting  with  confidence  in  the  face  of  ethical  dilemmas
§ Ethics  Is  Ultimately  Personal
• We  need  to  make  decisions  and  take  actions  that  we  can  live  with37
Q&A

Ethics  &  the  Project  Manager:


A  Critique

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Questions?

§ Quick  Review:  Process  to  Pose  a  Question


§ Questions?

Mark  E.  Mullaly,  PMP


What  Is  project  HEADWAY?

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Within  a  project  Framework
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Webinar  Survey

§ Feedback  Survey
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Mark  Your  Calendars!

Project  HEADWAY  

Building  Conflict-­Competent  Teams

Thursday,  17  March  2015


@  3:00  PM  EST

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The  End
Mark  Mullaly  is  t he  host  f or  
Questions  for  the  Presenter? today’s  webinar.  Mark  is  a  
Mark  Mullaly management  c onsultant  with  
more  than  25  years  of  
mark.mullaly@interthink.ca project  management  
experience.
@markmullaly
He  brings  a  wealth  of  
experience  in  managing  
Interested  in  project  HEADWAY? projects  in  a  broad  array  of  
sectors  and  industries.
Gina  Jones  
gina@projectmanagement.com 44