How often have you been in a situation where you’ve been rushed to make a choice and when you look back on the choice you made, you’re pretty sure you would make a different choice if you had another chance?
As consumers we are often bombarded with these crunch decisions…in the advertisements we see… sometimes with some of the big ticket items we are considering buying. We are given a limited time in which to act, and sometimes the pressure can get the better of us. The same applies with ethical decision-making.
A colleague recently shared a newspaper article with me about a study conducted by researchers from several well known universities regarding the amount of time someone is given to make an ethical decision and the impact. In one of the tests, participants were offered the choice of more money for lying or less money for being honest.
The participants, when given more time – three minutes versus less than 30 seconds – to think about the choices were 5 times more likely to make the more ethical choice of being honest.
Lisa Bowers is compliance manager for the Sodexo Office of Ethics and Compliance