What Is Moral Leadership?

Company Meeting

In today’s world, moral leadership is something that is needed. Yet, it can also be confusing as to precisely what it means to be an ethical leader.

A moral leader is someone who has integrity, self-discipline, and unselfishness. But besides that, they also have values and are willing to lead by example. Ethical leaders are also not blinded just by profits. Moral leaders are eager to embrace change and be inclusive by listening to what others have to say.

What Is Moral Leadership?

I am a great fan of the music group ABBA.  I recently heard an interview where they spoke about how they were offered billions of dollars if they would be willing to come back as a group and spend a year touring worldwide.  

They said they talked about it, and every one of them said “No,” the money was not worth the personal cost.  They felt the money was not the focus, and to be true to themselves and belief systems, they would turn down the offer.

Their answer made me think about morality and, in particular moral leadership. Moral Leadership is defined as:

“…a leader’s behavior that demonstrate superior virtues, self-discipline, and unselfishness.  It entails setting an example for others about the rightness or wrongness of particular actions and exemplifies the exercise of integrity and fulfilling obligations, never taking advantage of others, and serving as a selfless paragon”

Yujuan Wang and Hai Li

In this definition, words like “superior virtue, right and wrong, unselfishness, self-discipline, integrity, not taking advantage of others” are used in the definition of a moral leader.

When you look at this definition, moral leadership is much more than just doing what is right. An ethical leader has other qualities, including selflessness, self-discipline, integrity, making the right choices, and serving others.

Here are some qualities that a moral leaders has:

Moral Leaders Have A Personal Set Of Moral and Ethical Values

Moral leaders have their set of moral values. They have integrity as one of their sets of values. They know and live by the rule of right and wrong, which is also one of their values.

Moral leaders have morals and ethics as part of their name—their name and which means more than money. Ethical leaders have a moral code that they live by not just when they are working but every day of their life.

Moral leaders do not lie, cheat and steal because it is at the core of who they are; they have their moral compass. Both their professional and private lives have the same code of ethics and morality.

A moral leader does not impose their values on others but will choose to work with people who hold close to their values. In other words, they will not accept having employees or others who are outright cheating.

Moral Leaders Lead By Example

At the core of moral leadership is that moral leaders will lead by example. As they have their own set of moral and ethical belief systems, they lead others by example.

They will not allow others around them to lie, cheat or steal because of their belief system. They have integrity and lead with integrity.

“Ethical leaders should have the same expectations for themselves as for those that work for them. Ethical leaders help their employees with daily tasks, so they have an in-depth understanding of what the other workers do and the challenges that can come with their work.” 

Max H. Bazerman – Harvard Business Review

Moral Leaders Are Not Blinded By Profits

So many companies today are blinded by profits. They will put the money earned by their shareholders and stakeholders above all else, even if what they are doing is morally wrong.

Those leaders may justify their choices and say it is okay to lie, cheat, or even steal as long as it helps the company with the ultimate goal of making money.

A moral leader will look first if what they are doing is right or wrong before profit or profitability. For example, they understand that saving the planet may cost a bit more but at the same time, being concerned with their social, environmental footprint is important.

That is where moral leaders will be different than just ordinary leaders. They will put what is morally right above profit.

We have recently seen a lot of this play out in the news. In particular, I think about Facebook and the scrutiny they have come under lately because they were putting profit above what many considered morally wrong; this has caused a backlash against Facebook.

People want to know that a leader has their back and also their interests. They do not want to see one person gain money while hurting others. A moral leader will look out not just for their shareholder or stakeholders but also for the interest of others.

Moral Leaders are Inclusive

Moral leaders are also inclusive to all groups of people. People will trust them as they will feel like they have their back and are not talking bad about them behind their back.

A moral leader does not see himself as being right all the time but is willing to listen to what others have to say. At the heart of this, moral leaders feel that they can learn things from others, so they are willing to listen to what others tell them.

A moral leader understands diversity can be a good thing. Having different points of view about a subject matter within a business organization can help that business. And because the moral leader is willing to listen, people feel they matter, and their leader cares about them.

Moral Leaders Embrace Change

The world is changing at a rate that has never been seen before. With technology reaching every corner of the globe, changes are taking place at a breakneck pace.

Moral leaders understand that change is going to happen. An ethical leader is willing to change and has the courage, conviction, and vision needed to make positive changes.

These changes can be anything from bringing in the latest technology to helping everyone stay on track. The moral leader understands that to be an ethical leader means that they also need to look at and be willing to embrace change when and where required.

Moral leaders care about the people working for them. They realize that if the company has problems, it can affect the livelihood of those working together with them in the company.

At Mondoro, we believe morals and ethics are essential. If you are interested in seeing how Mondoro can help you with your company goals – we would love to talk to you to see how we can help you.

At Mondoro, we create, develop and manufacture home decor and home furnishing products.

If you are interested in finding out more about how Mondoro can help you create, develop, and manufacture excellent home decor and home furniture products – don’t hesitate to contact meAnita. Check out my email by clicking here or become a part of our community and join our newsletter by clicking here.

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Anita Hummel

Hi, I am Anita Hummel. I am the President of Mondoro. I am passionate about helping you CREATE, DEVELOP, and MANUFACTURE home decor and home furnishing products. I am also an avid blogger with a love of travel and riding my motorcycle around the streets of Hanoi, Vietnam.

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