What ethical, moral, or legal skills, dispositions, and/or strategies would help you resolve this dilemma?

Effective leaders have a high degree of self-awareness and know how to leverage their strengths in the workplace. Assessments are a valuable tool that professionals can use to learn more about themselves and consider how their temperament and preferences influence their interactions with others.

As you engage in this learning process, it is important to remember that everyone—regardless of temperament type or related preferences—experiences some challenges with regard to leadership. The key to success is being able to recognize and leverage your own strengths while honoring differences among your colleagues.

At some point in your leadership career, you will encounter an ethical or moral dilemma that requires you to take a stand and defend your position.

For this Assignment, you evaluate an issue and consider how you could act as a moral agent or advocate, facilitating the resolution of the issue for a positive outcome.

To prepare:

  • Consider the examples of leadership demonstrated in this week’s media presentation and the other Learning Resources.
  • To further your self-knowledge, you are required to complete the Kiersey Temperament as indicated in this week’s Learning Resources. Consider your leadership style, including your strengths for leading others and include your results from Kiersey Temperament Sorter to describe potential challenges related to your leadership style.
  • Mentally survey your work environment, or one with which you are familiar, and identify a timely issue/dilemma that requires you to perform the leadership role of moral agent or advocate to improve a situation (e.g., speaking or acting on behalf of a vulnerable patient, the need for appropriate staffing, a colleague being treated unfairly).
  • What ethical, moral, or legal skills, dispositions, and/or strategies would help you resolve this dilemma? Define the differences between ethical, moral, and legal leadership.
  • Finally, consider the values and principles that guide the nursing profession; the organization’s mission, vision, and values; the leadership and management competencies addressed in this course; and your own values and reasons for entering the profession. What motivation do you see for taking a stand on an important issue even when it is difficult to do so?

To complete:

Write a 4 to 5 page paper (page count does not include title and reference page) that addresses the following:

  • Introduce the conceptual frameworks of the ethical constructs of ethics, moral, or legal standards and the purpose of the paper.
  • Consider  an ethical, moral, or legal dilemma that you have encountered in your work environment and describe it.
  • Analyze the moral, ethical, and legal implications utilized in this situation. Describe your role as a moral agent or advocate for this specific issue.
  • Consider your leadership styles identified by your self-assessment and determine if they act as a barrier or facilitation during this dilemma.

Self Assessment results

Guardians (SJ’s) are the cornerstone of society, for they are the temperament given to serving and preserving our most important social institutions. Guardians have natural talent in managing goods and services–from supervision to maintenance and supply — and they use all their skills to keep things running smoothly in their families, communities, schools, churches, hospitals, and businesses.

Guardians can have a lot of fun with their friends, but they are quite serious about their duties and responsibilities. Guardians take pride in being dependable and trustworthy; if there’s a job to be done, they can be counted on to put their shoulder to the wheel. Guardians also believe in law and order, and sometimes worry that respect for authority, even a fundamental sense of right and wrong, is being lost. Perhaps this is why Guardians honor customs and traditions so strongly — they are familiar patterns that help bring stability to our modern, fast-paced world.

Practical and down-to-earth, Guardians believe in following the rules and cooperating with others. They are not very comfortable winging it or blazing new trails; working steadily within the system is the Guardian way, for in the long run loyalty, discipline, and teamwork get the job done right. Guardians are meticulous about schedules and have a sharp eye for proper procedures. They are cautious about change, even though they know that change can be healthy for an institution. Better to go slowly, they say, and look before you leap.

Guardians make up as much as 40 to 45 percent of the population, and a good thing, because they usually end up doing all the indispensable but thankless jobs everyone else takes for granted.


You are most comfortable when your life is structured. As a result you usually prefer a workplace that lets you create a routine you can settle into. Because you are dependable and exacting, your colleagues and customers rely on your work. Your ideal job offers you a clear chain of command, and lets you progress through a hierarchy based on your meeting expectations.

The School of Nursing requires that all papers submitted include a title page, introduction, summary, and references.

 Course Readings

  • Marquis, B. L., & Huston, C. J. (2015).Leadership roles and management functions in nursing: Theory and application (8th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins.

o   Chapter 4, “Ethical Issues”

This chapter examines ethical frameworks for decision making and principles of ethical reasoning. You are also introduced to the ANA Code of Ethics and Professional Standards, MORAL decision-making model, and ethics committees.

o   Chapter 5, “Legal and Legislative Issues”

Chapter 5 provides an overview of the many legal and legislative issues of which leaders and managers need to be aware. As you read this chapter, keep these issues in mind.

o   Chapter 6, “Patient, Subordinate, and Professional Advocacy”

Nurses are the best advocates for patients and the profession. This chapter examines more closely the role of becoming an advocate, patient rights, subordinate advocacy, whistle-blowing, professional advocacy, advocacy in legislation and public policy, and media.

  • Cianci, A. M., Hannah, S. T., Roberts, R. P., & Tsakumis, G. T. (2014). The effects of authentic leadership on followers’ ethical decision-making in the face of temptation: An experimental study. The Leadership Quarterly25(3), 581-594. doi:10.1016/j.leaqua.2013.12.001

    Abstract excerpt: The present research investigates the impact of authentic leadership on followers’ morality, operationalized as ethical decision-making, in the face of temptation. This experiment finds that authentic leadership and temptation interacted to affect individuals’ ethical decision-making. Specifically, authentic leadership significantly inhibited individuals’ from making unethical decisions in the face of temptation, whereas followers of neutral or less authentic leaders were more likely to succumb to temptation..

  • Disch, J. (2014). Using Evidence-Based Advocacy to Improve the Nation’s Health. Nurse Leader12(4), 28-31. doi:10.1016/j.mnl.2014.05.003

    Abstract excerpt: Evidence-based practice is 1 of the 5 competencies that the Institute of Medicine has identified for all health professionals. Its intent is to employ evidence-based practice and integrate best research results, clinical expertise, and patient values to make patient care decisions. This article will explore the concept of evidence-based advocacy and describe ways in which one prominent nursing organization, the American Academy of Nursing, uses evidence-based advocacy to positively impact the nation’s health and advance the nursing profession

  • Martin, M. B. (2014). Transcultural Advocacy and Policy in the Workplace: Implications for Nurses in Professional Development. Journal for nurses in professional development30(1), 29-33.  doi: 10.1097/NND.0000000000000027

    Abstract: This article introduces the role of nursing professional development specialists in serving as a resource for both patient and staff advocacy regarding cultural and linguistic matters. The impact of changing demographics, support for civil rights, and established policy related to culture and linguistics is emphasized. An overview of policy at local, state, and national levels is suggested to promote nursing professional development in the interest of culturally and linguistically compliant nursing practice.

  • Woods, M. (2014). Beyond moral distress preserving the ethical integrity of nurses. Nursing Ethics21(2), 127-128.

This guest editorial discusses the difficulties involved in dealing with those sometimes-painful moral problems encountered in practice.

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