Perfectly Poised for a Place of Practical Principles

on May 11, 2022
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This article was written by Drew Callingham.


Are you one of 80% of workers that said that their values aligned with their workplaces, or one of the 57% of workers who said it was important that they did?

We all want to feel good about where we work, and we want to believe that the organization adheres to the highest ethical standards.  What do you do when you discover that your workplace morals and company ethics are no longer in keeping with your own? How much stock do you place on your personal morals aligning with your bosses? There have been reports over the last 12 months of workers leaving their jobs in unprecedented numbers and it revolves around what companies are delivering regarding workplace culture and below we’ll find out why!

Value visibility

In the age of social media, social consciousness, and information technology, it is incredibly easy to find out how companies stand on wider issues – almost as easy as finding out about how your colleagues stand on them!

Worker conditions during the pandemic as well as movements targeting social justice have led employees to expect greater corporate transparency. There are emerging reports that worker values are a considerable component of the great resignation, that has seen incredible number of workers resigning or shuffling.

Those with higher skillset and more flexibility are more likely to leave current workplaces that misalign with personal ethics as there are substantially more options available – often for a bigger pay-packet.

Factors to consider before you decide to leave
  • What can I do to improve the situation? Think about the steps you can take that might make your circumstances easier to deal with. Sometimes, talking to a supervisor or a trusted colleague can give you a new perspective — and even make you see the potential benefits of the situation. A human resources manager can also provide some useful insight. If things still look hopeless, it’s probably a good time to leave.
  • Is it temporary or permanent? Consider whether your ethical dilemma is more likely to be short-term or long-term in nature. If you’re otherwise happy with your job and your organization, the best option might be to wait a while to see if things get better.
  • Can you still have pride in yourself and your work? If you feel embarrassed to tell people about your work, or you feel ashamed when you walk through the door each morning, you should strongly consider making a change.
  • Are you being asked to violate your moral principles? If you’re asked to engage in an activity or perform a task that you view as unethical or immoral, you can tryprinciple explaining your objections to your supervisor. If he or she is unable or unwilling to see things your way, you may need to resign rather than compromise your principles.
  • Is the situation damaging your relationships with co-workers and supervisors? If things have reached the point that you’re in a toxic work environment where you can’t trust your colleagues or your boss, it will be hard to perform your job well and feel good about where you work. If transferring to a new department isn’t a viable option, your only recourse may be to seek new employment opportunities.
  • Is it just your co-workers? If you find that it is just one of your co-workers that you have moral disagreements with, you should consider the internal company policies regarding the matter and attempt to minimise contact with the person.


How to handle the interview process if you leavejo

If you ultimately decide that quitting is in your best interests and you initiate a job search, be prepared for the inevitable “Why did you leave your last position?” question during interviews. Flatly stating that you quit for ethical reasons isn’t necessarily the best approach.

Answering with tact can make a more favourable impression on hiring managers. For example, you can state that you left due to philosophical differences. If the interviewer presses you for more details, simply explain that you can’t because you don’t want to reveal any proprietary information.

Also, you don’t want to find yourself in the same situation as with your previous employer. View the interview process as a two-way street. Don’t accept a position unless you feel confident that the organization has high ethical standards.


Always remember that a job interview goes both ways – you are interviewing them as much as you are being interviewed by them.


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