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Solving the Ethical Dilemma in Business and Society

Why study Solving the Ethical Dilemma in Business and Society?

The deterioration of ethical standards is one of the most serious dilemmas of the present era. Almost no signs exist of this deterioration abating unless courses such as this proliferate, with attendees becoming converts for a new era of ethical adherence and awareness. The ethical dilemma is commonly attributed to one sector, such as the public sector and government, while in reality the problem is more widespread and includes individuals, families, the private business sector, professions and even religions.  Obviously there are exceptions, but unfortunately not enough.

How will you benefit from studying this short learning programme?

Everyone displays a degree of ethical and unethical behaviour, whether they are conscious of it or not. All people are morally influenced by their culture, their family, their religion and working environment.
The purpose of this programme is to create an ethical awareness of moral behaviour in students.   Pursuant to this awareness, students will be educated in ethics consciousness and the resolution of ethical dilemmas.
This course addresses the importance of ethical behaviour in three categories:

  • Personal and family ethics (including ethnic and religious influences)
  • Business ethics  (the main category for this course as indicated in the title)
  • Professional ethics (e.g. the Code of Professional Conduct in Accountancy, inter alia)

The routes of ethical and unethical behaviour will be explored along with the manner in which everybody can contribute to an ethical turnaround and help to create an ethical culture. The most important principle in Corporate Governance is ethical leadership, and so the ethical underpinning in the business sector and how to promote and publicise ethical behaviour will be a major focus of the programme.

After completion of this short learning programme you will be able to:

  • Understand and appreciate the origins of ethical values
  • Identify your own influences which affect your moral behaviour
  • Display an awareness of different cultures: the Rainbow Nation concept
  • Link the above to the common religions (e.g. African Traditional, Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Judaism)
  • Utilise ethical resolving techniques to resolve personal ethical dilemmas
  • Exhibit advanced skills in identifying ethical/unethical behaviour
  • Carry out all aspects of an entity’s affairs in an ethical manner, with an ethical culture
  • Appreciate the need for the entity to publicise its ethical stance, and admit any unethical behaviour and the action to be taken pursuant to unethical actions
  • Conduct a thorough ethical analysis, taking into account the entity’s stakeholders
  • Provide guidance to all staff in ethical behaviour and the consequences of ethical non-compliance, including whistleblowing
  • Include clear, transparent ethical disclosures in the Integrated Report
  • Include ethical principles consistently when using Integrated Thinking
  • Have an insight into the numerous laws and regulations with which the entity must comply, bearing in mind that illegal acts are unethical
  • Be astute enough to identify the rare cases when legislation is unethical and seek reliable legal advice in such cases
  • Appreciate the need for a combined assurance model and understand the ethical implementation thereof
  • Understand and have a thorough knowledge of personal and colleagues’ Codes of Professional Ethics
  • Be able to solve an ethical problem involving a number of people (eg a Board of Directors) using the four step methodology, while understanding different moral viewpoints
  • Display an ability to resolve complex societal and business moral problems, using the various philosophical theories and Rational Interaction for Moral Sensitivity
  • Contextualise the importance of ethics for society as a whole, leading into the future


 Download the Application for Admission Form




2 Saturday mornings

  • Location: MSA Campus (10 & 17 March; OR 9 & 23 June; OR 1 & 15 Sept; OR 1 & 8 Dec)
  • Cost: R4 500

MSA Competency based short learning programme

Who should attend

All individuals at any level in the business sector, including directors, their employees, professionals, entrepreneurs and public sector management and employees. Religious boards, charitable administrators, people seeking work and academics will also find this programme beneficial. Whether students have some ethical knowledge or none at all, they will benefit from this programme. This programme is one of the most comprehensive as regards business ethics.

Entry requirements
  • Senior Certificate or equivalent NQF level 4 qualification with appropriate experience
About the course facilitator

Humphrey Gowar, BComPGDA(Natal)CA(SA)FInstD, Adjunct Faculty at Monash South Africa, specialising in Corporate Governance.

Humphrey began his career by qualifying as a Chartered Accountant, serving 5 years in practice with Ernst & Young and 2 years in banking. He then began an academic career at the University of KZN, where he co-authored a textbook which is now in its 28th edition, and was a member of a team that prepared candidates countrywide for their professional exams. Humphrey was then recruited by UDW as an Associate Professor. At UDW he was elected Dean, Chairman of the Committee of Deans, Head of the Transformation Forum, and was then appointed Vice Principal.   Thereafter the University of Technology recruited him as Registrar: Finance, and Head of the Department of Internal Auditors.  For 7 years he served, inter alia, on the Executive of the KZN branch of the Institute of Directors. Soon after moving to Johannesburg as a consulting registrar at Bond University, he established a consultancy specialising in Corporate Governance, Mentoring of Directors, Strategy, Risk, Ethics and Leadership and was made a Fellow of the Institute of Directors (SA). 

His accomplishments include being elected Fellow of the Corporate Governance and Sustainability International Group and being nominated for international Influencer of the week.  He also is a member of the International Business Roundtable Institute for Corporate Ethics.  This has led to him being included in the Sanford International ‘Who’s Who’.

As part of the Monash South Africa faculty, Humphrey is currently lecturing on Corporate Governance and related management. He is also a regular speaker on various topics in industry.

Contact us

011 950 4009 enquiries@iiemsa.co.za
From outside South Africa
+27 11 950 4009

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