Workplace Civility: A Confucian Approach

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Business Ethics Quarterly, ISSN: 1052-150X, Vol: 22, Issue: 03, Page: 557-577

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Kim, Tae Wan; Strudler, Alan
Cambridge University Press (CUP); Cambridge University Press
Business, Management and Accounting; Arts and Humanities; Economics, Econometrics and Finance; workplace civility; Workplace incivilityl Confucianism; sacred; ritual; management ethics; civility; Confucianism; sacred; ritual; management ethics; Business; Business Law, Public Responsibility, and Ethics; Chinese Studies; Comparative Philosophy; Ethics and Political Philosophy; Applied Ethics; Business Administration, Management, and Operations; Human Resources Management; Law; Management Information Systems
article description
We argue that Confucianism makes a fundamental contribution to understanding why civility is necessary for a morally decent workplace. We begin by reviewing some limits that traditional moral theories face in analyzing issues of civility. We then seek to establish a Confucian alternative. We develop the Confucian idea that even in business, humans may be sacred when they observe rituals culturally determined to express particular ceremonial significance. We conclude that managers and workers should understand that there is a broad range of morally important rituals in organizational life and that managers should preserve and develop the intelligibility and integrity of many of these rituals. © 2012 Business Ethics Quarterly.