Whether you know it or not, we all encounter situations on a daily basis that require us to make a decision that will affect another person, or challenge our ethical or moral philosophy. We all like to think of ourselves as very good and principled people (which most of us are), but how far will we go to strive for, and ultimately reach that destination? How would you react in these different situations that test your honesty?
You walk into a restroom at the restaurant you’re dining at, you’re the only one in there, and on the counter you see an expensive watch with no identification; what do you do? Do you think you hit the lottery, put the watch in your pocket, and tell no one? Do you tell the restaurant manager what you found, and have him attempt to find the owner?
You’re walking back through the parking lot after buying groceries, and you find a wallet with a drivers license with $20 in it, what do you do? Easy? What if the wallet had $2,000 in it, and you were really short of cash and out of work? Would you do the same thing now, as you would have if it only had $20?
What would you do if you saw your best friend’s wife in a restaurant with another man? Would you tell your friend? Stay out of it and figure it’s between the two of them?
Would you tell your husband you spent $100 on a dress, when it really cost you $200?
Your neighbor owes you $5,000 for his part of a new fence that was built. You see him drop his wallet with $200 in it. Do you tell him, or figure it’s yours because he owes you money?
At work, an intern tells you about an idea he has, you discuss it at the next meeting and everyone loves it. Do you give credit where credit is due?
Is it ok to do something “a little wrong” if it doesn’t hurt anyone, or if no one knows about it?
These are situations we all face in our daily lives. As you can see, some are minor, and some are serious. The fact that they range from little incidents to major ones, doesn’t detract from the fact they all require an ethical and moral decision on our part.