“Leading with Courage: The Middle Manager’s Guide to Ethical Decision-Making

management is a crucial position in an organization where individuals are
responsible for communicating the higher-level decisions and corporate culture
to their subordinates while also making important decisions that can impact
their team’s performance and well-being.

some instances, middle managers may find themselves in a difficult position
where they receive instructions from higher-ups that they perceive as flawed or
detrimental to their team. This is where true leadership qualities come into
play. A boss might simply follow orders without questioning, even if they
realize the negative consequences for their reportees. On the other hand, a
leader will take the time to consider the implications of the decision and may
choose to challenge the higher-ups if they believe there is a better way
forward that benefits their team.

qualities in this context can include:

Courage: The ability to stand up for what is
right, even when it’s challenging or uncomfortable. This involves voicing
concerns and proposing alternative solutions to higher management when needed.

Empathy: Understanding the needs and concerns of
the team members, and taking those into consideration when making decisions,
rather than solely focusing on the demands from above.

Ethical Decision-Making: Prioritizing ethical considerations and
doing what is morally right for the team and the organization, even if it means
pushing back against instructions that conflict with those principles.

Communication Skills: Effectively conveying the reasons
behind decisions to the team, even when they may not be favourable, and being
transparent about the challenges faced with upper management.

Strategic Thinking: Considering the long-term impact of
decisions and how they align with the overall goals of the organization, while
also ensuring the well-being of the team.

Problem-Solving: Finding creative solutions that balance
the needs of the team with the expectations from higher management.

Advocacy: Acting as an advocate for the team,
championing their interests, and ensuring they have the necessary resources and
support to succeed.

exercising these leadership qualities, a middle manager can transform into a
true leader, gaining the respect and trust of their team members. Such leaders
often foster a more positive and productive work environment, as they
prioritize their reportees’ well-being and growth, and find ways to navigate
difficult situations while upholding their values and principles


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