(Almost) Anyone Can Do Unethical Acts In The Office
Ask anyone to name someone who has done unethical acts on the job and it probably won’t take long to make a list.
Names will emerge like the mastermind of the financial scam, Bernard Madoff, the plagiarist journalist of The New York Times, Jayson Blair and many more.
While most people who cross the ethics line don’t steal millions of dollars from unsuspecting investors or embarrass one of the world’s most respected publications, recent research suggests that the average worker doesn’t is not entirely immune to certain acts.
Last May, four academics from US universities released a report showing that most people are capable of doing something a little unethical. What is really important, however, is that they have found that a small mistake can lead to even more serious behavior over time.
The study’s authors call it the “slippery slope effect” and see Madoff as a good – albeit extreme – example of how small indiscretions can get worse over time.