Ethical Leadership Improve The Job Satisfaction Management Essay

For the purpose of the respond to the age of rapid change in the environment today, a new type of leadership is necessary to use in order to adopt the change and avoid failure of a company.

Some researcher (Northouse, Peter Guy, 2001) suggested that the ethical theory provides a system of rules that gives a direction for human to define what is “right and wrong” and “fair and unfair” in order to achieve distributive justice. Ethical theory also provides an understanding about which thing to be done is exanimated as a morality behavior.

This paper review two major ethical theories: Ethical Egoism, Utilitarianism and discuss how these two theories affects the efficiency and job satisfactory of the employee.

Job Satisfaction (1)

In simple words, job satisfaction is concerning how the employees feel about their jobs, do they like or dislike the job. It will affect their willingness to comply with directives or just quit the firm. Job satisfaction is an attitudinal variable that can be a diagnostic indicator for the degree to which people like their job (Paul E. Spector, 1997). There are many ways to affect their job satisfaction, for example, relationship between coworkers, pay, benefits, working condition, safety, supervisors. This paper is mainly focus on the relationship between ethical leader and the job satisfaction of employee.

Ethical Leadership (2)

Most but not all people share the same core values about how they would feel happy, when they are satisfied with the situation even if they are working. In generally, there are two ways to view the world, one is selfish point of view and another is ethical point of view. Selfish point of view means that people only consider itself and they do not respect others. They have their own core values to treat the things they are going to do. While ethical point of view means people whose are respecting people.

Ethical Leadership is the way in which a leader behaves, set the tone and builds the culture of an organization to effectively develop and empower the people in a company which is the critical success factor in a company (Linda M. Sama & Victoria Shoaf, 2008). This is the reason why the leadership in promoting work ethic in a company is being popular nowadays, leader often be involved to control the outcomes that may affect employees such as how they work to meet the goals. The leader is in the ideal position to provide a highly visible role model for others to follow who can give some strong signal to the employees that the employees will maintain a strong ethical performance in facing such pressure. So that the leader can use the tools of position of leadership to promote ethical conduct at work, they make ethics salient by modeling ethical conduct to their employees.

Ethical is an intangible things that is very hard to describe in sentences, a code of ethics can be used. A code of ethics is a set of rules and guidelines that is used to set out the acceptable behavior for the employees, and also manger. The employee can govern themselves with such code of ethic when they are facing the ethical problem during their work. The format of the code of ethic can be totally different, it always started with the organizational values, principles, standards, controversial ethical situation they may face and the possible action they may do. To implement a code of conduct, ethics and compliance programs can be rolled out consisting, for example, of employee training, communication programs, security measures, hotlines, disciplinary and enforcement mechanisms, and response protocols. When codes are implemented forcefully and embedded strongly in the culture, reports of unethical behavior tend to be lower. (Ben A. Maguada & Robert M. Krone, 2009)

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However, some of the researchers (Kaptein, Huberts, Avelino, & Lasthuizen, 2005) said that although there are almost all national government departments and 47 percent of the 100 largest local governments in Netherlands have codes of conduct, they told that the effectiveness of the use of code of conduct is elusive. In the Ethical leadership and employee’s job satisfaction, the effectiveness of using ethic in a company will be explained.

[Governments demand compliance, ethics demands leadership, 218]

Ethical leadership and employee’s job satisfaction

There are some popular ethical theories that can be applied to the leadership. In this section, our discussion about how these theories will always fall the job satisfaction of the employee. To measures the job satisfaction, commitment, trust is used. The theories can be categorized as teleological theories, which are Ethical Egoism and Utilitarianism.

Commitment defined by (Bello, 2012) as loyalty and attachment of an individual or group to the organization. Organizational commitment is defined as a state in which an employee identifies with a particular organization and its goals and wishes to maintain membership in the organization. Commitment had been used by organizations to predict desired employee behavior in the areas of performance, absenteeism and emotional attachment. Employees’ commitment is necessary for desirable organizational outcomes like job satisfaction (Lum, L, Kervin, J, Klark, K, Reid, F, & Sirola, W, 1998).

Trust is a sacred and emotional relationship between people; the expectation of faith that individuals have on the organization and leadership (Darcy, 2010). Trust is the foundation for constructive conflict, goal commitment, personal accountability, and achieving collective goals (Lencioni, 2005 cited in Collins, 2010). Trust is a positive expectation that another will not act opportunistically (Robbins, Judge, Millet & Water-Marsh, 2008). This is the expectation of others in words, actions or decisions.

Ethical Egoism

Ethical egoism states that a person should act so as to create the greatest good for themselves. A leader with this orientation would take a job that he selfishly enjoys. Self-interest is an ethical stance closely related to transactional leadership theory. The leader with transactional leadership are more aware of the goals and objectives of the organization (Singh, 2012). So that in some ways, such theories are able to implement strategies more effectively. But this theory do not promoting the ethics due to the fact that the employees only focus on the end and the goals. A famous professor in the Bayero University, Kano (Bello, 2012) agreed that in transactional leadership style, the employee does nothing out of a sense of loyalty and selflessness toward the organization but only acts as a means of gaining payment.

Ethical egoism is common in some business contexts in which a company a company and its employees make decisions to achieve its goal of maximizing profits. Social injustices will be occurred when individuals have put their own interests first.

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Utilitarianism also called greatest happiness principle which decided whether an action is right or wrong to the extent that it increases or decreases the total happiness of the affected parties. U does not promote claim there is always a right thing to do in any situation, but it suggests there is always a best suit of action in different situation. Utilitarianism values can take the form of act or rule based utilitarianism. Act utilitarianism is a consequentialist principle that focusing on the consequences. To identify an action is good, add up the change of happiness of all affected parties in terms of its potential to produce the greatest amount of good for the largest number of people. While rules utilitarianism focusing on adopting moral rules and which will lead to the greatest increase in total happiness if the rules is followed by everyone. It defines who will be benefit or harmed after the action and see whether the harm is more than the benefits or not.

-ve Commitment (2)

As mention in the Ethical Egoism section, the leader is focus on the end with theirs own interest. The efficient to meet the goals is increased, the employee may not happy if

Break the promise due to they put their interests first

[Leader Ethics and Organizational Commitment, 18]

Commitment (2)

Willingness to report problems, willingness to put in extra hours and positive perceptions of work climate

Maximizing the number of affected parties are fair

Price’s primary perspective on ethical leadership is grounded on Kant’s admonition that ethical duty is recognized “universalizability”: “Act as though the maxim of your action were by your will become a universal law of nature.” In principle, no leader is ever allowed to act in a way that is “exceptional” to the principle of “universalizability.”

-ve Trust (2)

Will not offer their ideas, their enthusiasm, or their souls

Leader uses his power or position for his personal gain or advantage in total disregard of what is morally right or wrong

Trust (2)

Solomon contends that creating trusting relationships and maintaining ethical standards is neither an excessive burden nor a business disadvantage.

[Business, Ethics, and Leadership in a Post Enron Era, 13]

Leaders above the law? Can they claim they are exceptional or that they have a free-ride status? The answer for Price is always a definitive deontological no! Leaders should never be above the law, and we all common-sensically know that. When people in leadership positions

[Leadership Ethics – An Introduction, 602]

Dirks and Ferrin (2002) found that the most important antecedents for trust in leaders are leadership style and practices, in particular transformational leadership, perceived organizational support, and interactional justice. They also suggested that role-modeling behavior may be responsible for the effects of transformational leadership.

With regard to followers’ trust in their leader, the results to date suggest that integrity (together with ability) is especially important in cases of trust erosion compared to cases of trust building, where benevolence is the most important dimension of trustworthiness (Lapidot, 2007).

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Podsakoff, MacKenzie, Moorman, and Fetter (1990), however, found that transformational leadership-a leadership style that is often said to be closely related to ethical leadership (Bass & Steidlmeier, 1999; Brown & Trevino, 2006; Lasthuizen, 2008)-has a direct effect on followers’ trust in their leader, which suggests an implicit relationship between ethical leadership and trust. Furthermore, in her research regarding the relationships between leadership and trust, Den Hartog (2003) found a strong correlation between perceived leader integrity and trust in leader. Caldwell et al. (2008) also conceptually related ethical stewardship to increased levels of trust, but without any empirical exploration or testing. Finally, the trustworthiness of the leader is often seen as a prerequisite for setting a good example as an ethical leader (Trevino et al., 2000; Trevino & Weaver, 2003).


[ETHICAL LEADERSHIP – Keeping Values in Business Cultures, 13]

Commitment/Trust (2)

[Impact of Ethical Leadership on Employee Job Performance, 231]

[Extra effort on the job, Ethical and Unethical Leadership – Exploring New Avenues for Future Research, 586]

Ethical Leadership Maintenance (1)

For instance, is there an open enough environment where ethical issues can be discussed and apparently unethical behavior can be questioned?

A formal ethics policy can play an important role in creating and maintaining ethical culture

code of ethics, as the cornerstone of an ethics policy, could also be regarded as a tangible, aspirational expression of the organization’s ethical culture (well-designed business ethics policy)

The design of the code itself is also important. As noted earlier, what ethical issues are addressed in a code and how they are explained have an impact on an ethics policy’s effectiveness. If a code only addresses a narrow set of issues and/or only sets out rules with which the employees are expected to comply, it is unlikely to help create an ethical culture.

It will also be good practice for an organization to ensure that employees can obtain advice on ethical issues or raise concerns about them (obtaining advice and speaking up)

Training and awareness raising ensures values and ethics are embedded in the organization is training and awareness raising (AMA 2006). This can be done in various ways. It usually forms an integral part of induction training programs; but employees at all levels should be trained (at least) on the ethical issues that relate to their jobs and be made aware of the company’s ethics standards.

[Corporate codes of ethics – necessary but not sufficient, 409]

[Leadership and Business Ethics – Does It Matter Implications for Management, 331]

[Leadership and Ethics in the Service Industry, 14, 15]

[Ethics and leadership – enablers and stumbling blocks, 154]

Leader leading by example, employee development and a learning culture combine to promote an ethical approach to leadership.

[Ethical Leadership for the Professions – Fostering a Moral Community, 41]

They must practice not only the skills developed from their professional training, but also they must exercise leadership over others.

An important characteristic of trust is that the trustor has expectations of the trustee’s behavior. If those expectations are met, trust is seen as having been warranted.


Conclusion (1)

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