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Associate Professor Amanda Shantz wins prize from MIT Sloan Management Review 

September 11th, 2019

Associate Professor Amanda Shantz’s paper ‘Building an ethically strong organisation’, co-authored with Professor Katie Bailey of King’s Business School, has won the MIT Sloan Management Review’s annual Richard Beckhard Memorial Prize. 

The prize recognises the most outstanding article published by the journal on planned change and organizational development in the last year, and is judged by a panel of the MIT Sloan School of Management’s senior faculty members.

Associate Professor Shantz and her co-researcher examined why persistent unethical conduct occurs and what managers can do about it.  Their field research encompassed surveys, interviews, focus groups, and in-depth case studies of five UK organizations.

They found that an organization’s ethical tone was determined by how employees addressed common dilemmas in their everyday work and that doing the right thing was not always the most expedient or profitable approach.

Handling dilemmas in the right way, they concluded, requires management to acknowledge ethically ambiguous situations, clarify the trade-offs, model the desired behaviours, create and enforce robust corporate policies and procedures, empower employees to speak up when breaches occur, and embrace a higher purpose that transcends self-interest.

“Leaders need to set a strong ethical tone in the organisation by generating a common understanding of what the organisation values, clearly communicating the consequences of behaving (un)ethically, and ensuring that employees have the ability, motivation and opportunity to do the 'right thing'” says Dr. Shantz.

You can read Associate Professor Shantz and Professor Bailey’s paper online.