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Bolster strategy and performance with an ethical decision framework

Anthony O’Reilly ( is a founder of O’Reilly Advisors LLC in Newton, Massachusetts, USA.

Ethical decision-making sounds like a simple thing; perhaps we think we inherently understand what is ethical and what is not, and so we don’t need a framework. Or perhaps the organization proclaims basic ethical standards and considers the work done.

These approaches ignore two important factors: Ethics statements are typically nothing more than table stakes for being in business, and any framework for ethical decision-making needs to be specifically helpful to people facing challenging, real-life situations. We need to think more deeply if we’re serious about helping guide behavior.

Here is how a global systemically important bank adopted a framework for ethical decision-making to strengthen client relationships.

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