Deontological and Consequentialist Perspectives

Task 1


Leadership is often defined as the ability to influence people. An effective ethical leader guides an organization and its employees to accomplish organizational goals. In the same vein, an unethical leader can guide an organization and its employees to act unethically, harming both the organization and the stakeholders. Being a leader is an exploration, a reflection, and a test of your leadership values. Seeking understanding of how you resolve ethical dilemmas, taking inventory of where an ethical weakness may lie, and examining the traits of an ethical leader helps you define, shape, and apply an ethical decision-making framework, while also taking into consideration all stakeholders who may be affected by your decisions.


You are a sales representative for a medical device company that manufactures artificial joints. Your company has developed an artificial knee joint that is less expensive than the competition and will dramatically reduce healing time for patients. However, it is also known to produce a serious and potentially lethal infection in a small percentage of patients. The company refuses to disclose this potential side effect. You feel you have a duty to divulge this issue, but you signed a nondisclosure agreement when you were hired and worry about possible repercussions.


Write an essay (suggested length of 6–8 pages) in which you do the following:

A. Select a nonfictional leader (someone famous) who you feel has exhibited exemplary ethical conduct and do the following:

1. Discuss two ethical traits your chosen leader has demonstrated.

2. Explain how your chosen leader has exhibited ethical conduct.

B. Compare the deontological and consequentialist perspectives and how each perspective would approach the dilemma from the scenario.

C. Identify and explain which level of cognitive moral development (i.e., preconventional, conventional, or postconventional) is represented in the scenario for each of the following questions:

D. Reflect on your Ethical Lens Inventory (ELI) by doing the following:

1. Explain your preferred ethical lens, relevant to the ELI.

a. Analyze whether you have the same preferred lens in different settings (e.g., work, personal, social).

2. Explain one of your primary values and one classical virtue from the ELI.

Note: If you are a Center Perspective, choose any primary value.

a. Compare your primary value from part D2 with one of your own self-identified or personal values. Then compare your classical virtue from part D2 with a different self-identified or personal value.

Note: Examples of personal values can be found in the attached “Clarifying Your Values” chart.

3. Describe one of the following from your ELI:

a. Discuss two steps you can take to mitigate the blind spot, risk, double standard, or vice described in part D3 in order to make better ethical decisions in the future.

4. Discuss how the information from your ELI could be applied to an ethical situation in the workplace.

E. Submit a copy of the PDF file with the results from your ELI as a separate document.

F. Acknowledge sources, using in-text citations and references, for content that is quoted, paraphrased, or summarized.

  • Which action would most likely serve the greater good in society?
  • If I reveal this information, will I get into trouble and possibly even lose my job?
  • Which action best aligns with my long-held belief in the principle of justice?
  • What do the laws say, and what would a law-abiding citizen do?
  • If I keep quiet, will I get some sort of reward?
  • blind spot
  • risk
  • double standard
  • vice

Answer preview

The deontological perspective is popularly recognized as rule-based, duty-based, or Kantian ethics, whereby actions are morally obligatory despite their implications on human welfare. According to Roby (2018), the philosophy behind deontological ethics emphasizes systematizing, protecting, and recommending decisions without regard for right and wrong consequences. This means that choices people make can be morally forbidden or not justified by the implications of those acts. Kant argues that choices are right if they conform to moral norms that everyone universally should obey. For deontologists, choosing to do the right things is more appropriate than relying on actions emphasizing the good. Hence, based on the case scenario concerning the ethical dilemmas, the right step would be complying with the disclosure agreement since, as an employee, my duty would be to follow the company’s laws. The choice

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Deontological and Consequentialist Perspectives
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