Dirty Hands and Loyalty in Organisational Politics

Business Ethics Quarterly 15 (2):283-298 (2005)
Abstract
Organisational politics can raise the problem of “dirty hands,” illustrated in this paper by an example drawn from a textbook on organisation theory. The initial question is whether the main character has different ethical and political obligations, but this leads on to the question to what extent we can distinguish various different categories of obligation. The example may be of special interest because of the importance of close personal relationship in organisational politics, which brings the dirty hands problem together with the question to what extent friendships generate distinctive obligations. However, it is doubtful whether the allocation of obligations to different categories can be sustained in a useful way. It may be that we can put aside loyalty to an organisation, as a consideration which does not generate any distinctive obligation, but balancing other factors against one another may require the sort of judgment that has sometimes been called “political wisdom,” and sometimes “moral imagination.”
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Citations of this work BETA
Juan M. Elegido (2013). Does It Make Sense to Be a Loyal Employee? Journal of Business Ethics 116 (3):495-511.
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