The Ethics Game provides two scenarios that present ethical issues in the business world. The progression of the information asks the participant to identify the issue and the stakeholders, assign importance to their role in the issue as well as in the solution, and to use ethical steps of questioning to look at the issues through four different ethical lenses. The game guides the player as he or she progress toward a sound recommendation of how to handle the issues. There are excellent responses that are based on the criterion each lens is made up of, but there are also good options and a poor option. The game asks the player to reflect on possible answers before making a decision and encourages the player to impart the same process in addressing real world ethical issues. The game described two ethical dilemmas. In the first the ethical issue is a possible instance of sexual harassment in the workplace. The first game involves a worker who is receiving flowers from a secret admirer, one who is presumed to be a specific coworker. This issue is complex because there are many stakeholders and there is no definitive offender for the player, who is a sales manager, to hold accountable for the action. The second scenario involves a potentially fraudulent report that the player, as a senior scientist, must assess and take action upon.
This scenario identifies two specific persons with conflicting data, but also several involved stakeholders who may be affected based on the action of the player/scientist. The ethical dilemma again is how the player works through the steps in the Baird Method to arrive at the most effective solution. The Baird Method prompts the participant to Be Intelligent, Be Attentive, Be Reasonable, Be Responsible, and Be Reflective. Using the method a person in position to make a decision will consider what all the facts of the issue are, who is responsible, consider what the virtuous decision is and what is fair, determine how best to fit the ethics lens when determining action, and asks the decision maker to be thorough and try to anticipate the end result of the decision. The Baird Method should be used whenever one attempts to solve an ethical issue. It is adaptable to different dilemmas and if used consistently can help avoid making rash or hasty decisions that can have a negative impact on the stakeholders and the company. The game uses the flower dilemma and the conflicting data ethical issues as an opportunity to work through four ethical lenses.
Depending on the lens that the decision maker is using he or she may choose different tracks to resolve the issue. The game shows us that regardless of the ethical lens, an excellent resolution can be achieved if the Baird Method is used. The rights/responsibility lens would lead the participant to consider the individual when arriving at a solution. The results lens takes into consideration the best outcome for all involved. The relationship lens will lead the decision maker to consider the liberties of others, and the reputation lens asks the decision maker to consider how the outcome will affect the business’s status in the community, or what the perception of the company will become. The best solution will be to consider all the lenses when making decisions and to consider options from all lenses. The most important consideration is that the final resolution succeeds in addressing the ethical issue without doing more harm than good. Working through my personal ethical lens I am most inclined to be reasonable and seek the solution that is fair for all parties, which represents the Results Lens.
The Ethics Game forced me to look at dilemmas through multiple lenses that were not necessarily natural to me. Using the Baird Method and working through the steps to identify the important components of the dilemmas, I was challenged to consider aspects that I normally would not. The exercise opened my mind to different solutions based on the different lenses. I know that I need to be more open-minded when I am faced with ethical dilemmas. The four Ethical Lenses when looked at with the aid of the Baird Method allow me, or anyone, to intelligently and comprehensively look at ethical issues that may arise in our daily business relations. Though the specifics of the Ethics Game scenarios are unlikely to reoccur in our own lives, the knowledge gained by going through the process are what is important to take away. The Baird Method and the Ethical Lenses are universal tools that will guide me as I make important choices. The process of solving ethical issues is consistent regardless of the particular situation. That is how the Ethics Game prepared me for future conflict resolution.