Integrity: Without It Nothing Works

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Harvard NOM RESEARCH PAPER NO. 10-042 ~ and ~ Barbados Group WORKING PAPER NO. 09-04 ~ and ~ Simon School, University of Rochester RESEARCH PAPER NO. FR 10-01 Rotman Magazine: The Magazine of the Rotman School of Management, pp. 16-20, Fall 2009 Integrity: Without it Nothing Works November 29, 2009 Michael C. Jensen Harvard Business School Social Science Electronic Publishing (SEEP), Inc. This paper can be downloaded free of charge from the Social Science Research Network at: Preliminary and incomplete, comments welcome © Copyright 2009. Michael C. Jensen. All rights reserved November 29, 2009 Negotiation, Organizations and Markets Research Papers HARVARD NOM RESEARCH PAPER NO. 10-042 BARBADOS GROUP WORKING PAPER NO. 09-04 Integrity: Without It Nothing Works Interview: by Karen Christensen, from Rotman: The Magazine of the Rotman School of Management, Fall 2009, pp. 16-20. Jessie Isidor Straus Professor Emeritus, Harvard Business School Chairman, Managiing Director and Integrity Czar, Social Science Research Network MICHAEL C. JENSEN Abstract There is confusion between integrity, morality and ethics. In our much longer paper on the topic (see “Integrity: A Positive Model that Incorporates the Normative Phenomena of Morality, Ethics and Legality” (available at )) my co-authors, Werner Erhard and Steve Zaffron, distinguish integrity, from morality and ethics in the following way. Integrity in our model is honoring your word. As such integrity is a purely positive phenomenon. It has nothing to do with good vs. bad, right vs. wrong behavior. Like the law of gravity the law of integrity just is, and if you violate the law of integrity as we define it you get hurt just as if you try to violate the law of gravity with no safety device. The
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