When Organizations Don’t Walk Their Talk: A Cross-Level Examination of How Decoupling Formal Ethics Programs Affects Organizational Members

Tammy MacLean, Barrie Litzky, D. Kip Holderness

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This research illustrates dangers inherent in the gap created when organizations decouple ethics program adoption from implementation. Using a sample of 182 professionals in the pharmaceutical and financial services industries, we examine the relationship between structural decoupling of formal ethics programs and individual-level perceptions and behavior. Findings strongly support the hypothesized relationships between decoupling and organizational members’ legitimacy perceptions of the ethics program, psychological contract breach, organizational cynicism, and unethical behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)351-368
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Business Ethics
Volume128
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2015

Fingerprint

moral philosophy
examination
financial service
pharmaceutical
legitimacy
industry
Decoupling
Ethics programs
Financial services industry
Pharmaceuticals
Psychological contract breach
Legitimacy
Unethical behavior
Organizational cynicism
Industry
Psychological
Danger
Cynicism

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Law

Cite this

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When Organizations Don’t Walk Their Talk : A Cross-Level Examination of How Decoupling Formal Ethics Programs Affects Organizational Members. / MacLean, Tammy; Litzky, Barrie; Holderness, D. Kip.

In: Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 128, No. 2, 01.05.2015, p. 351-368.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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