雙重標準的問題

By: Rick Boxx

根據馬瑞思特學院公共意見研究所(The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion)做的兩項研究,只有28%受訪者,其中包括只有44%的企業領袖相信人們在職場和個人生活中是用同樣的道德標準。顯然工商專業人士在公開和私下的行為展現了差異。至少人們是這麼感覺--對許多觀察者而言,感覺就是實際的情況。

雙重標準可能可以解釋我們從媒體上聽到的一些罪證確鑿的道德問題。雖然領袖們支持誠實、正直、公平等美德,但為了權宜方便,那些美德常被丟在一邊。那些權宜牽涉到升遷、完成一筆交易、作假帳、或許多其他的不道德做法。

在「為達目的可以不擇手段」的思想盛行時,活出信仰的人就變得稀少。而且坦白說,大部份的商學院很少開商業道德的課程,因為對於該用哪些道德標準作為模範,大家很難達成共識。

讓我建議一本可以符合這目的的「教科書」:聖經。聖經不僅談到職場上的議題,它也教導許多商業上的合宜行為。而且它不建議「隨情況而改變的道德」。以聖經為標準的好處在於你只需要記得一套標準--而且這套標準適用於你的個人和工商領域。

在新約記載耶穌基督的書卷,也就是福音書中,我們看到耶穌常常碰到那些有雙重標準的人,祂總是嚴厲地指責他們。在馬太福音23章27-28節祂警告道:「你們這假冒為善的文士和法利賽人有禍了!因為你們好像粉飾的墳墓,外面好看,裡面卻裝滿了死人的骨頭和一切的污穢。你們也是如此,在人前,外面顯出公義來,裡面卻裝滿了假善和不法的事。」耶穌用的是很強烈的字眼。

耶穌當時是處理宗教領袖的情況,但祂的論點很清楚:祂譴責任何一個有權位的人嘴巴說一套,做的卻是另一套。我們沒有一人是完美的,但耶穌痛恨假冒為善。

有些人爭辯說,雖然聖經提出了崇高的行為標準,不論是公開或私人的領域,但那些標準在21世紀的真實世界裡是不實際且行不通的。我要駁斥這樣的說法。世界上有許多例子說明領袖和公司以聖經作為他們每天運作的準則。當面臨試探想要妥協時,有時確實很難堅持原則,但若能成為一個活出信仰的人或機構,那獎賞是非常值得的。

你是否厭倦了過雙重標準的生活,根據當時環境的需要而搖擺不定?你是否厭煩於承諾一件事卻做出完全不同的事?你可以試著只用一套標準:聖經,來簡化你的生活。

本文版權為正直資源中心(Integrity Resource Center, Inc.)所有。本文獲得授權改編自「瑞克.博克思的正直時刻 Integrity Moments with Rich Boxx」。這系列的文章是以一個基督徒的觀點評論職場的正直議題。想要更多了解正直資源中心或想要收到電子文件的「瑞克每天的正直時刻 Rick”s daily Integrity Moments」系列文章,請上網 www.integrityresource.org

思想 / 討論題目
若有人問你是否相信人們在職場和私下的生活中都用相同的道德標準,你會如何回答? 請誠實回答,你是否能想到有一次你與自己所宣稱的道德標準牴觸,或是在工作中的行為是你私下生活中絕不會做的,或者反之亦然? 在你看來,什麼原因造成人們在生活和工作中有雙重標準?有什麼方法可矯正這種互相矛盾的行為? 你是否同意聖經在職場和個人生活中都是合宜道德行為的「教科書」?為什麼?註:若你有聖經且想要看有關此主題的其他經文,請看:
箴言10章9節,11章3節,20章14節;哥林多後書1章17-20節;歌羅西書3章17、23節;雅各書5章12節

THE PROBLEM OF DOUBLE STANDARDS

By: Rick Boxx

According to two studies conducted by The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion, only 28 percent of the individuals surveyed, including only 44 percent of business leaders, believe people use the same set of ethical standards in the workplace as they do in their personal lives. Apparently, business and professional men and women exhibit marked differences in their public and private behavior. At least that is how they are perceived – and for many observers, perception is reality.

This double standard might explain some of the well-documented ethical problems we have been hearing about in the media. Although leaders may espouse values such as honesty, integrity and fairness, those virtues are often cast aside in favor of expediency – whether that involves professional advancement, closing a sale, misrepresenting accounting records, or many other unethical practices.

The individual that consistently lives out beliefs is becoming increasingly rare as an “end justifies the means” philosophy reigns. And frankly, most business schools rarely if ever offer classes on ethics since it seems so difficult to reach a consensus on what ethical standards to uphold as the model.

Let me suggest one “textbook” that would serve that purpose well: the Bible. While the Scriptures certainly are not limited to workplace issues, there is a wealth of teaching about proper conduct in business. And it does not suggest a “situational ethics” approach: The beauty of holding to a biblical worldview is you only have to remember one set of standards – and they apply to both your personal and business life.

In the New Testament”s account of the life of Jesus Christ, which we know as the Gospels, we see that Jesus often encountered those who had a double standard, and He was always stern in dealing with them. He warned in Matthew 23:27-28, "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness." Strong words, right?

Jesus was addressing religious leaders in this situation, but His point was clear: He condemned anyone in a position of responsibility that professed to believe one thing yet acted in a completely different manner. Not one of us is perfect, but Jesus hated hypocrisy.

There are some who would argue that although the Bible offers lofty standards for behavior, whether in public or in private, those standards are unrealistic and simply do not work in the real world of the 21st century. I would dispute such an argument wholeheartedly. There are numerous examples around the world of leaders – and companies – that have consistently turned to the Bible as their guide for everyday operations. Yes, it might be difficult at times to stand firm when faced with the temptation to compromise, but the rewards of becoming known as a person – or organization – that lives out what you believe are worth the effort.

Are you tired of living according to two different ethical standards, vacillating according to circumstances and the need of the moment? Have you grown weary of promising one thing and then doing something very different? Try simplifying your life and just use one standard: the Bible.

Copyright 2010, Integrity Resource Center, Inc. Adapted with permission from "Integrity Moments with Rick Boxx," a commentary on issues of integrity in the workplace from a Christian perspective. To learn more about Integrity Resource Center or to sign up for Rick”s daily Integrity Moments, visit www.integrityresource.org.

Reflection/Discussion Questions
How would you have answered if someone had asked you whether you believe men and women use the same ethical standards both in the workplace and in their private lives? Being honest, can you think of a time when you contradicted ethical values you profess, or conducted yourself in a manner at work that you would never have considered doing in private – or vice versa? What are some of the reasons, in your opinion, for people living and working according to a double standard? What might be some remedies for avoiding such conflicting behavior? Do you agree with the suggestion to use the Bible as the “textbook” for proper ethical behavior, both at work and in personal conduct? Why or why not? NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more about this subject, consider the following passages:
Proverbs 10:9, 11:3, 20:14; 2 Corinthians 1:17-20; Colossians 3:17,23; James 5:12

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