Personal and Professional Values in Decision Making

The purposeful choice to pursue creative thought as we seek greater understanding of ourselves, our associations, and our world is foundational to the development and ultimately, the establishment of our personal values and ethics.

Judicious, strategic thought processes enable individuals to realize the qualities within themselves as well as areas that need eradication or improvement. “A person’s attitude toward himself has a profound influence on his attitudes toward God, his family, his friends, his future, and many significant areas of his life.” (Institute,1986) God tells us in II Corinthians that we are “epistles…known and read by all men.” It is through clear understanding of the facts, principles, and concepts presented in God’s Word that one can manifest the person God declares him to be. If I were to be the only book that an individual might read, it is my sincere desire that they will read Jesus in me.

God calls His children to prepare their minds for action (I Peter 13:1), to purpose to increase in knowledge and wisdom (I Peter 15), and to do so with gentleness and respect. God summons us to critical thinking, “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and correctly handles the Word of Truth.” (II Timothy 2:15) Utilizing the tools of critical thinking; observation, remembering, wondering, inquiring, interpreting, evaluating, and judging, we align ourselves with the mandates of Scripture in every context of our lives. God said in II Timothy 3:16 & 17 that, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” The decisions I make in my personal, professional, organizational, and civic life are scrutinized under this biblical lens.

Many thoughts run through a young mother’s mind the moment she gives birth and the doctor declares, “It’s a boy!” My very first conscious thought was, however, not so typical. I replied to the Lord as He impressed upon me His plans for my son, “Oh no Lord, I don’t want him to have to face the ravages of war. Please God, spare my son from such misery”. Throughout Jeremy’s growing up years God confirmed His calling for my son. Trusting God implicitly, I surrendered my son to Him.

It takes a purposeful study of God’s Word to truly come to know Him in all that He is. He is the Creator of sunsets and of hurricanes. He is the Creator of majestic mountains and of tidal waves. He is Sovereign, Holy, God Almighty, Creator, Redeemer, most loving and most terrifying. Jeremy called me from Colorado State University one evening just prior to his junior year. He informed me he was going to enlist in the Armed Forces. I disclosed to him that I had always known. I assured him that God would protect him. Thirty days later, the World Trade Centers and the lives of many innocent victims were destroyed. God, in His sovereignty created my son for such a time as this.

Throughout the tumult of war I had to continually guard my heart from fear. My son’s wife spent much of the time during his deployment with our family. She was reading the living book God had provided, page by page, chapter by chapter. Had she found evidence of Jesus amongst the pages?

Stuart C. Gilman, President of the Ethics Resource Center (ERC) stated in speech delivered May 6, 2004 at Tranparancia por Colombia’s Annual General Meeting:

A strategy based on integrity holds organizations to a more robust standard. While compliance is rooted in avoiding legal sanctions, organizational integrity is based on the concept of self-governance in accordance with a set of guiding principles. From the perspective of
integrity, the task of ethics management is to define and give life to an organization’s guiding values, to create an environment that supports ethically sound behavior, and to instill a sense of shared accountability among employees. The need to obey the law is viewed as a positive aspect of organizational life, rather than an unwelcome constraint imposed by external authorities.

To be truly effective, ethics must be an integral part of the organizational culture. What then, are the character qualities that define and support ethically sound behavior? I have taught ethics values in my home, Sunday School classes, sales training courses, leadership development courses, and to those I have mentored. One of the most effective strategies for defining and understanding personal and professional ethics is to define each desired quality and then to follow with its antonym.

Attentiveness

Attentiveness is intentionally observing, listening, speaking or behaving toward someone that shows them you accept and value them. It is also being aware of trends, the competition, shifts in the economy, changes in the organizational climate and other factors that could impact your organizations future.

I exemplify attentiveness when I:

Adjust my schedule to accommodate the needs of those I am serving. Consistently follow through with what I have promised.Apply the resources I have in a creative way to overcome obstacles and provide solutions.

Synonyms: conscientious, thoughtful, considerate, proactive, self-less, thorough

Antonyms: inattentive, inconsiderate, ignorant, insensitive, reactive, self-absorbed

Grace

Grace allows individuals to dream, plan, and take calculated risks in their personal and professional lives without criticism or judgment.

I embrace grace when I:

Allow others the freedom to fail forward, without admonishment, in order that they may effectively learn valuable life lessons necessary for future achievement.

Demonstrate unconditional acceptance.

Withhold discipline when discipline is warranted, but compassion would be the better teacher.Synonyms: benevolent, courteous, empathetic, generous, just, merciful, patientAntonyms: arrogant, callous, critical, discourteous, inconsiderate, legalism

Integrity

Integrity is the distinguishing characteristic of purposely acquiring and steadfastly adhering to a set of high moral or professional principles. It establishes an organizational foundation built on the cornerstones of personal and collective accountability, mutual respect, open and honest communication, and credibility. It prevents an organizational identity crisis.

I demonstrate integrity when:

My attitudes, words, and actions consistently reflect my values. I incorporate ethical practices in myself, family, community, and my profession. I devote my energy and resources to furthering the organizational goals and objectives of my employer. I promptly and resolutely confront unethical behavior.

Synonyms: accountable, honorable, principled, righteous, steadfast, tenacious, truthful

Antonyms: immoral, deceitful, devious, dishonorable, fickle, unreliable, unscrupulous

I have purposefully chosen to pursue creative thought to seek greater understanding of myself, my associations, and my world. It has been foundational to the development and ultimately, the establishment of my personal values and ethics. Through judicious, strategic thought processes I
recognize the qualities within myself as well as areas that need eradication or improvement. My personal and professional code of ethics are one in the same. They do not reflect the way I perceive myself. They reflect the way God perceives me; that I might be an “epistle…known and read by all men.” It is through clear understanding of the facts, principles, and concepts presented in God’s Word that I can manifest the person God declares me to be.

Reference Page

Auxillium West. (2002, August 19) Effective Organizations: Organization Development

Retrieved August 31, 2004 from http://www.business.com

Department of Institutional Research and Effectiveness. (2004, March) University of

Phoenix Fact Book 2004. Phoenix, Arizona.

Gilman, S.C. (2004, April 6). Private Sector – The Co-Responsibility in Building

Integrity. Ethics Resource Center 2004-05 Speech ID: 855. Retrieved July 28,

2004, from http://www.ethics.org/resources/speech_detail.cfm?ID=855

Victoria Krayna BSB/M; MM Founder/President of Life-staging by Victoria

Life Transformation Coach Provide individuals with the motivation, determination, and follow-through to catapult themselves into definitive action toward their life’s purpose.

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