Annetta Gibson, co-author of a new textbook that integrates a Christian worldview with business ethics, talks about how the book came to be and how it relates to her job training church treasurers for the General Conference.
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://spectrummagazine.org/interviews/2019/putting-ethics-business
Oh, please do write that other book. I would definitely buy and read!
Congratulations on your new book!
Could the Subtitle read Transactional Ethics. Business is just form of transaction. But ethics involves all parts of human exchange. Of course one could define business as including many forms of human exchange., The class room is is a critical part of human interaction.
Dr. Ann Gibson not only teaches and writes about ethics, she lives the ethics she expounds. Dr. Gibson is one of the longest serving directors on the Pacific Press Board—having served in that capacity for nearly 30 years. Her steady, thoughtful, and insightful contributions have made a huge impact at Pacific Press, as well as on the many other boards that have been fortunate enough to have her as part of their team. I have personally appreciated her ability to inspire and encourage—along with knowing the right questions to ask. Serving on multiple institutional boards while teaching full time is no easy task—even if Dr. Gibson makes it look easy! When the principles in her new book, Honorable in Business, are put into practice, our church institutions will run much more effectively and consistently represent God’s church in a way that reflects the ethics of our Lord.
I am sure there are those who will take umbrage with my view, for while I salute the author for her endeavors, the term ‘business ethics’ is an artificial designation. A person is either ‘ethical’ or they are not.
To suggest someone might be ethical in their personal lives and unethical in their business dealings is without credibility…a form of impossible split personality.
The current Sabbath School quarterly would be a good tutorial for those interested in the topic, outlining God’s intention in His design of an economic system which would protect the vulnerable, prevent systemic poverty and maintain justice.
Yes, one is either ethical or not…but this book is specific for “business” which would cover topics that would not be covered anywhere else.
I think we agree…the author’s work is anecdotal and illustrative…all of which are useful for aspiring, or even seasoned entrepreneurs…but not fundamental.
In business and life your word should be your bond.
Even if one’s ethical motive is not the ideal, in a “free market” environment every transaction is an agreement between two people. A seller and a buyer. This is how market value is determined. If the seller sells a bad “product” they will eventually suffer. So in a sense the market place forces a reasonably good ethic on a seller.
Not the ideal method of ethic formation but still a reality.
This is one of the most valuable purposes of a free market vs. A planned economy. In a planned economy there are no alternatives availiable just beaurecrats that pretend to know what is to be sold and what it’s worth! Choice and relative value is removed.
Clearly Dr. Gibson is living what she teaches in that she gives Dr. Augsburger a co-author designation rather than just a contributing one, even though a decade and a half after his passing, he would be unable to protest any designation she chose to give.
This sounds like a book worth purchasing. To those posters above who say that you are either ethical or not, I would suggest that sometimes the options may be difficult and not as cut and dried as it may appear. I have been a business owner for 20 years. It’s pretty easy to say, I won’t cheat my clients (well, it is for me). It can be somewhat more challenging when you have multiple competing priorities that conflict and you are trying to choose the course that is most ethical and best honors your responsibilities.
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