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The purpose of this synthesis paper is to provide a brief overview of the concept of ethical leadership and the reason leaders require followers in order to lead. In the last twenty or more years, numerous books, thousands of articles have been written on leadership styles, styles of management, motivation, and related topics. The main thrust of most of these writings has been that some form of participative management or non-authoritarian leadership style, as opposed to an authoritarian style of management, will result in improved organizational performance. The belief is business success is realized when organizations are built on a foundation, an ethical foundation. It is further believed that an ethical culture will guide organizations through difficulties and decision they face.

Not everyone has the same moral code and awareness of rules and laws. In the so-called "ethics era" of the 1990s (Smith, 1995), morality is no longer thought of as an issue peripheral to the activity of a business. Rather, as institutions become responsible to society for meeting consumption needs in the content of society's ethical and spiritual expectations, ethical issues are "assuming a level of importance approaching the more traditional managerial and strategic concerns of marketing inquiry" (Reidenbach and Robin, 1998). The concern about ethics in business is closely related to the issue of social responsibility, which refers to "the doing of societal good unrelated or minimally related to the business in view" (Camenish, 1991).

Business organizations often involve decision-making and implementation and often managers are faced with conflicting decisions, parties or priorities that require action. Empirical research on ethical beliefs in business organizations investigates the kinds of ethical problems that managers face in the course of their everyday work and begins with a well-known study of attitudes of Harvard Business Review rea...

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Leadership. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 08:55, November 29, 2021, from