To Make Better Decisions, Use Your ‘Moral Imagination’

The Big Quack (CC BY 2.0)

“Greed is good” no longer: research shows that successful companies achieve a balance between profit and social impact, thanks to the work of decision-makers who are able to realize mutually beneficial outcomes. Their success, according to “Examining the Impact of Moral Imagination on Organizational Decision Making,” published by Lindsey N. Godwin of Champlain College on July 11, 2012 in Business & Society, may stem from the ability to master the art form known as “moral imagination”:

…What are the attributes of decision makers that enable them to realize mutually beneficial outcomes? This dissertation argues that one critical key to solving this question is a better understanding of moral imagination in organizational decision making. To test this hypothesis, a new vignette-based cognitive measure for moral imagination in organizational decision making was created to explore empirically the relationship between moral imagination and mutually beneficial decision making. Overall, findings from 180 respondents supported the hypothesis that individuals, who exercise moral imagination, including the ability for discerning moral issues and developing a range of possible outcomes during the decision-making process, are indeed more likely to generate a mutually beneficial outcome for a situation compared to those who do not exercise moral imagination. Implications and directions for future research are discussed.

Learn more by reading the full article here in Business & Society, and get more information about the journal here. Do you want to receive the latest management research in your inbox? Click here to sign up for e-alerts!

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