When faced with a difficult decision, Joseph Badaracco wants you to gather information like a manager and make a decision like a human being. Meaning, there are plenty of processes to use to get to the bottom of a tricky situation but in the end you need to rely on your own best judgement, whether you’re Tim Cook of Apple deciding whether or not to work with the US Government or you’re a mid-level manager who might have to fire somebody. The author of Managing in the Gray joins us for some examples of other people who have had to rely on their own judgement when there weren’t any answers in the employee handbook.
Joseph L. Badaracco is the John Shad Professor of Business Ethics at Harvard Business School. He has taught courses on business ethics, strategy, and management in the School’s MBA and executive programs. Badaracco’s current research focuses on what counts as sound reflection for busy men and women who have serious responsibilities and face hard, practical problems. He has written several books on leadership, decision-making, and responsibility. These include Defining Moments: When Managers Must Choose between Right and Right, Leading Quietly: An Unorthodox Guide to Doing the Right Thing, Questions of Character, and The Good Struggle: Responsible Leadership in an Unforgiving World. These books have been translated into ten languages.