ETHICAL LEADERSHIP - Monsignor Prof. Obiora Ike`s Website

Implications for the new generation
of Nigerian academic leadership.
Presented by
Msgr Prof Dr Obiora Ike
UNN leadership Mission, Vision and Action Workshop
September 2010
• Ethics refers to the rational basis for
human action on a normative level (what
ought to be) and on an empirical level
(what actually happens).
• Ethical leadership is like a business
strategy that promotes sustainable,
competitive advantage of organizations
(innovation, trust, stakeholder satisfaction
and reliability) despite fierce competition.
• Ethical leadership is the power of ethical
trust which is stable and resilient.
• Ethics helps leaders build high trust and
high performance in organizations for
competitive excellence.
• It offers leaders sharp examples as to how
values in the hearts of people not only
guide day to day activities but get them
pursue strategy consistently, reliably and
flexibly in the face of unforeseen events.
• A CEO who sticks by his principles, even
at the toughest times earns trust and
• Ethics brings a special type of trust into an
organization for both the individual and the
• Ethical leadership has competitive
advantage if it is adopted for its own sake,
not as a means to an end.
• Ethics leads to trust and trust leads to
sustainable competitive advantage.
• Culture, values and norms are critically
important to ensure ethical behavior
(internalized values offer the most
effective form of behavior and self
• Ethical behavior arises deep from within
people – from positive motivation rather
than negative regulation (you cannot
legislate against dishonesty. It is a value
from within).
• Less regulation and more inspiration from
leaders results in self-discipline.
• The best form of governance is selfgovernance. The best business is Ethics.
• values are a set of core beliefs as to how
we should or ought to behave in a broad
range of situations.
• Ethical companies and institutions are
reliable and survive the tempest.
• A leaders greatest challenge is to embed
values in the organization’s culture. It is
dangerous to ignore this challenge.
• Consistency is essential in a competitive
• The true test of an ethical organization is
how it behaves in tough times when
unethical behavior is tempting.
• Reliability is one of the most important
factors in business and leadership.
• A business, society or any group of people
living together express its preferred values
by means of behavioral norms.
• Socially-praised worthy behavior is about
living and working together harmoniously
and interdependently.
• Trust is the bond of society. Trust is hard
to build and easy to break down.
Deception is the most dangerous enemy
of trust.
• A business culture that actively rejects
deception will nurture trust.
• The best checks on deception are active
enquiry, checking of information,
accessing evidence and accessing
whether good reasons for trust exists.
• Deception is the prime enemy of trust, but
any act of bad management erodes trust.
• Placing trust is risky. Not trusting is also
risky. Distrust is part of authentic trust.
• Team concern is ethical. Members of a
great team do things for the members of
the group. They have WE intentions. Good
teams make sacrifice for mutual benefits.
• Cohesion pushes productivity. Belonging
boosts identity. Bonded interdependence
leads to well being and high performance.
• To make a stand for what is right for
others is one of the most self-defining
things we can do.
• A spontaneous sense of obligation by the
leader to do the best for the organization is
a key factor for sustainable competitive
• Normative trust is about trusting one
another to do what is right. Ethical trust
cuts transaction costs, simplifies
complexity, facilitates creativity,
networking and membership pride.
• Generalized reciprocity is the most reliable
kind of trust in business.
• Ethical leadership implies ability to: Think
Strategy, Think Structure, Think Culture.
• To be competitive, you must innovate or
else you die. Good leaders coordinate
people and resources through inspiration.
• Good strategy is a never ending
preoccupation. It is long term, sustainable
in competitive advantage and is not short
• The leader’s own personal ethics and
trustworthiness are essential to his tasks.
• The new generation of Nigerian academic
leadership is private sector driven, not civil
service or public sector oriented.
• Private sector values are result oriented,
innovative, enterprising and profitable.
• Time is of essence in ethical leadership
and management is by example.
• Stakeholder understanding of business
involves community, entrepreneur and
environment beyond shareholder value.
• Ethical leadership in education speaks the
African voice by retrieving the past,
engaging the present and shaping the
• The university as a teaching institution
trains skilled personnel and does not
manufacture unemployment.
• Research systems elicit responsibility
which point to the way forward.
• Indigenous philosophies and spiritually
centered wisdoms are within the academy.
• Ethical leadership in African education
exhibits a mirror of humanity.
• Africanisation of knowledge explores
mathematical and scientific experience
embedded in local cultural practices.
• Indigenous revolutionary education utilizes
local content in curriculum development,
practical discourse and liberation
• Thank you for your rapt attention as I now
look forward to a lively discussion within
available time.
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