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Steven Mintz
United States
My ethics knowledge and wisdom gives me a unique perspective on accounting and business ethics, fraud and whistle-blowing, societal and workplace ethics issues.
Interests: Reading, writing, blogging, ethics advice, traveling, eating, sports
Recent Activity
Kristen, it certainly seems that way to me as well.
Jack, I agree with you on the importance of risk assessment.
What you can do about Bullying in the Workplace If have blogged many times before including what is and what is not workplace bullying. In this blog I revisit the issue and focus on what employees and employers can do to educate employees about bullying and develop effective programs to... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Workplace Ethics Advice
Right versus wrong is not Relative or Situational but based on Concrete Moral Virtues Recently in preparing for a lecture on moral education to my students, I came across an interesting essay titled Moral Education -- A Brief History of Moral Education, the Return of Character Education, and Current Approaches to Moral Education. It got me thinking about writing a blog on the issue of moral education -- where we've been and where we should go in the future to develop a more ethical society and restored our collective moral compass. Moral education refers to helping children acquire those virtues... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Ethics Sage
Matthew: I'm glad you found my student's piece worthy of merit and I hope it helps in your own work. The student deserved an A+ but we stop at A grades. Still, I told it was an A++! Steve M.
Toggle Commented 7 days ago on The Ethics of Fighting ISIS at Ethics Sage
Discrimination against Women Occurs on Many Levels I have blogged before about sexual harassment in the workplace. In this blog I look at the practices, and resulting ethics, of sexism. Sexism is both discrimination based on gender and the attitudes, stereotypes, and the cultural elements that promote this discrimination. Occupational... Continue reading
Posted Dec 10, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice
Do the Ends Justify the Means in Pushing a Person to Excel Beyond Normal Limits of Behavior? One of the most enjoyable aspects of blogging on societal ethics issues is the opportunity to comment on cultural aspects of our society including the ethical message of television programs and movies. Two weeks ago I blogged about "The Ethics of Shark Tank." In today's blog I examine the movie "Whiplash" from an ethical perspective. If you haven’t seen it as yet, I highly recommend it for its dramatic excellence, acting, and thought-provoking message about when do the ends justify the means from... Continue reading
Posted Dec 9, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Social Media Policies should be developed to protect the Individual and Organization On November 11, I blogged about “Social Media, Civility and Ethical Responsibilities of Millennials.” Today I look at social media practices and the integrity risk to organizations inherent in those practices. Social media is an umbrella term used... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice
Elliot: You make good points. A lot needs to come out about the Hertz fraud before we can conclude that PwC was negligent or worse. We should give the firm the benefit of the doubt at this early stage of the fraud disclosure. Thanks for your contribution. Steve
The Ends do not justify the Means in an Ethical Decision-Making System Five ethical values underlie academic integrity: honesty, trust, fairness, respect and responsibility. Recent disclosures about the actions of two professors at prominent universities brings into question whether their academic integrity was compromised leading to the broader question of whether academic ethics is an oxymoron. In each case, a professor made a decision that violated the ethical rights of stakeholders to be told the truth about the basis for their actions. The professors violated academic integrity by deciding to mask the truth and mislead others, all in the name... Continue reading
Posted Dec 2, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Train travel is the Answer to a Broken Airline System Last year, airlines worldwide made an extra $27.1 billion in "ancillary" fees like the ones for checked bags and upgraded seats, according to a study from analysts at Idea Works Company. That's more than double the amount airlines made from... Continue reading
Posted Nov 26, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice
Hertz Restatements due to Inadequate Internal Controls and Faulty Audit by PricewaterhouseCoopers On November 14, 2014, Hertz confirmed that it would restate its financial statement results for 2012 and 2013, adding to the already announced restatement for 2011. The disclosure led to a 14% drop in the share price of Hertz stock on top of a previous decline of 23% since the first announcement in June. Hertz does not expect to conclude its internal investigation until mid-2015, so the final amount of the restatements will not be known until that time. The questions from an ethical perspective revolve around the... Continue reading
Posted Nov 25, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Analyzing the Ethics of Sharks for Shark Tank Nation Shark Tank is a reality television show where would-be entrepreneurs try to sell their new ideas for business ventures to one or more well-established investors (i.e. the Sharks) in return for a stake in the business. The show is based on BBC’s Dragon Den Series in which budding entrepreneurs get three minutes to pitch their business ideas to five multi-millionaires willing to invest their own cash. Shark Tank is so successful that it now has a following: Shark Tank Nation. Repeats of the show are shown every night during the week... Continue reading
Posted Nov 20, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Ethics, Leadership, Respect and Responsibility form the Basis on an Effective Mentoring Program A formal mentoring program can be used to develop employee skills, leadership characteristics, and a commitment to the ethics of the organization. Mentors are an important resource for new employees to help navigate the sometimes choppy waters... Continue reading
Posted Nov 19, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice
Architect of Obamacare Admits to Misleading the Public about the Bill MIT professor Jonathan Gruber, one of the architects of Obamacare, should be fired by MIT for violating academic integrity by purposefully lying about the effect of the bill on Americans and disguising its true nature as a tax, not a penalty, for those who do not enroll in one of the available health plans. There is no excuse for his behavior and recent admissions demonstrate that he knew the true nature of the bill; what it was trying to accomplish; the lack of transparency in misleading the public; and... Continue reading
Posted Nov 18, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Whistleblowing Incidents Influenced by The Bystander Effect I have previously blogged about “The Bystander Effect” and how it accounts for situations where observers of wrongdoing stand idly by without intervention while harmful behavior goes unchecked. Those who might be able to act to stop the wrongdoing do not do so... Continue reading
Posted Nov 13, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice
Your Actions and Words on Social Media Define Your Character I recently read a blog post about “10 Social Media Blunders That Cost a Millennial a Job – or Worse.” This got me thinking about the way I address the issue in my ethics class. To me, the nature of a person’s blog posts or comments on other blog posts say a lot about their ethics and respect for civility. What’s needed now is for someone, or some group, to develop a code of ethics for those using social media especially targeted to Millennials. Some of the postings I see... Continue reading
Posted Nov 11, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Ethisphere list Includes Companies with Questionable Behavior Last week I read a piece about the most ethical companies that caught my eye because it suggested that Blue Shield and other companies pay Ethisphere to be considered one of the most ethical companies in the world. Ethisphere develops a list each... Continue reading
Posted Nov 6, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice
Several Countries Claim Unethical Behavior in Selection of Qatar Football's world governing body Fifa is under growing pressure from a number of sponsors after its decision to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar. Sony, Adidas, Coca-Cola, Visa and Hyundai/Kia have expressed concern over claims of wrongdoing in the bidding process. In total, five of Fifa's six main sponsors have issued statements relating to the Qatar bid. Oil company BP and the maker of Budweiser beer, who also sponsor the World Cup, have also registered their concerns. Only airline Emirates has so far declined to comment. No surprise there as... Continue reading
Posted Nov 4, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Are their Shared Values Among Workers of Different Generations? Generation gap analysts believe that shared experiences condition generational groups to see and act differently than other generational groups; hence, the emergence of a generation gap. These generational differences, they believe, cause us to communicate and use technology differently and have... Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice
‘Tar heel-Gate Raises Many Ethical Issues about the Behavior of UNC Officials If you’re a sports fan, by now you have probably heard about that paper-class scandal that I call “Tar heel-Gate” where 3,100 student-athletes at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill were essentially allowed to take classes without attending classes and given grades good enough to keep them eligible to play men’s football and basketball. For 18 years, these students at UNC took fake "paper classes," and advisers funneled athletes into the program to keep them eligible, according to a scathing independent report released last week. "These... Continue reading
Posted Oct 28, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Ethical Legalism is at Heart of Yelp’s Posting Policies Last month the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit ruled that the online review site Yelp can change the ratings of businesses on its site as it sees fit. Yelp was accused of lowering the ratings of companies that... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice
Does the Increased Bureaucracy Justify the Protection Afforded Students? New federal rules issued on Monday aim to make campuses safer by requiring colleges to train students and employees on preventing sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking. The rules also include new categories for identifying hate crimes (gender identity and national origin) and specify that students can choose advisers, including lawyers, to accompany them in campus disciplinary proceedings. The rules will take effect in July 2015. Until then, colleges are expected to make a "good-faith effort" to comply with the rules. "These regulatory changes provide new tools to improve... Continue reading
Posted Oct 22, 2014 at Ethics Sage
Our Values define who we are in Life and in the Workplace Acting in accordance with company values in the workplace is the key component in developing an ethical organization culture. Still, are there any situations where one’s values can be compromised for the greater good? If so, what are... Continue reading
Posted Oct 21, 2014 at Workplace Ethics Advice