Who Ethics Help?

Mercy Ijiogbor Written by Mercy Ijiogbor · 2 min read >

Like seriously? You mean ethics means nothing to you? Pause, take a break and ask yourself, ‘is ethics really useless in itself?’ The answer is NO. I have come in contact with a lot of people, even MBA students, who holds the opinion that being ethical, is a total waste of time, most especially, if the environment (space) does not encourage one to be ethical. The operating environment you find yourself, should not be allowed to have a negative effect on you, rather, you should challenge yourself to become better version of yourself. What then is ethics? This is also called MORAL PHILOSOPHY, which is the discipline concerned with what is morally good and bad and morally right and wrong. The term is also applied to any system or theory of moral values and principles. What are these fundamental principles of ethics?

Principle of Solidarity:

Solidarity, refers to the ties in a society that bind people together as one. In general, solidarity is an awareness of shared interests, objectives, standards and sympathies creating a psychological sense of unity of groups or classes. As a social being, when you fail to be concerned with the well-being of all human beings, you undermine your own fulfilment.

Principle of Rationality:

This is the existence of reasons or intentions for a particular set of thoughts or actions. In simple terms, being rational can be likened to acting intelligently, which means guiding oneself by an intelligent consideration of the way in which our actions are likely to help or harm the fulfilment of human beings. In acting intelligently, our intelligence is able to survey and understand the whole field of human possibilities and ways of reaching our own and other peoples fulfilment. Behind every reasonable actions of yours, always ensure you consider the impact it will have on others and not just your own ‘fulfilment’.

Principle of fairness or impartiality:

In our dealings with others, it is important we deal with them without bias or injustice. Note that, this principle of fairness does not demand that we treat everybody identically, rather, it is consistent with fairness to treat different people differently provided one has a reason for discriminating that would also be valid, if other individuals were concerned. Be fair to all!

Principle of efficiency:

In trying to promote human fulfilment, good intentions are not enough, one must endeavor to use effective means. Remember, a very prominent feature of human existence is scarcity and as such, all resources, energies and time must be channeled to the right course and used efficiently.

Principle of refraining from inflicting directly willed harm to others:

One should never choose to inflict harm directly on others, regardless of any logical reason one might have. In actual sense, no reason can justify this act. Sometimes, we could harm others mistakenly by our actions or inactions, what should we then do in a case like this? Your willingness to admit that indeed you have made a mistake is very important, afterwards, ensure you co-operate with the injured party so as to lessen the impact of your deed(s) on them.

Principle of role responsibility:

In actual sense, one does not have equal responsibility for all aspects of the well being of all human beings. One’s special circumstances, capacities, roles and commitments give one a priority responsibility for certain aspects of the well-being of certain people. You should ensure you pay special attention to those you are directly responsible for and not neglect the others.


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