Ethics and ethical decision making in Leadership

The issue the paper addresses is the President Donald Trump’s decision to move the U.S embassy in Israel, from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The decision creates an ethical dilemma. The first thing is that during his campaign, president Trump made a promise to move the embassy (Cohen-Almagor, 2017). The other thing is that we wanted to show Israel that he offered them his support. On the other hand, though, taking sides angers the Palestinians, who also claim that Jerusalem is their capital, and that it is their holy city. There is a probability that there will be a strained relationship between the Israelis and the Palestinians.

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President Trump is authoritative. If he thinks something is good, he does it, if he thinks it’s of no good or value, he doesn’t go ahead with the action. Other people’s opinions don’t affect his decision making. His influence tactics involve trying to talk to Congress into agreeing with him, so that they can pass the things he deems fit. However, for decisions that don’t necessarily need the congressional approval, he just goes ahead and makes them.

The possible outcome is that there will be a strained relationship between the Israelis and the Palestinians. The reason is that the Palestinians will feel as though justice hasn’t been served. They’ll also be bitter thinking that the Israelis will have obtained land that they consider theirs. The Israelis are also likely to feel superior to the Palestinians, since they feel they have the backing of the United States. There is, however, a positive element to the decision. The positive effect is that the land issue is sorted. From the decision, it is clear that the land under conflict belongs to the Israelis, and not the Palestinians. Another thing is that Trump is guaranteed to get support from the Israelis and other anti-Muslims, and will also make economic contracts with them, which will highly favor the Americans.


The leader supports the values of conscious capitalism. By moving the US embassy to Jerusalem, it shows that he acknowledges that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital city. It also shows that all the land in Jerusalem, especially the part under conflict, belongs to the Israelis. The Israelis can thus use the land as they please. The leadership style that Trump uses is not effective as he partly solves the land issue, and also gets support from the anti-Muslim supports, but it causes conflict between the neighbors, and also between Christians and Muslims. Since it is an ethical dilemma, the decision was both right, and wrong. Right in that he kept his promise to the Israelis, and also brought division among people. However, it was wrong for him to take sides while making the decision, considering the conflict created may live on for ages.

If I was in the same situation, how would things be different? If I were to make the decision, I would consider the involved parties.  The best thing is two get the two parties to discuss the issue, get the facts, and then help them come to a conclusion or make an agreement. To achieve that, the best thing would involve showing them how the issue has caused problems and delayed progress to the two parties. The other thing is to show them how a problem has continually been passed on to generations, and showing them how finalizing the issue would positively impact future generations. Showing the intensity of the problem and the advantages of solving the problem is a good tactic. It motivates the involved parties to create solutions fast. The leadership style applicable is one where the leader acts as a mediator. The reason I would apply the concept is to show the leaders how they should think, rather than what they should think. The leader guides the involved parties but leaves them to make their decisions. The leader only offers support if the involved parties request the involvement.

The possible outcome is that it would take a little longer for the parties to agree, or make conclusive decisions, but the decision made would be made consciously by both parties. After solving the problem, they would invest, or they can then use the land in conflict as each party would want. Another thing is that the consequences of the decisions made will be a responsibility of the involved parties, and not the leader involved. An example is that there are people who are discontent with Trump’s decision and have resulted in demonstrating. In a situation where a protester dies, Trump will be somewhat responsible for their deaths, and not the leaders of Israel and Palestine.

Leadership Philosophy

The applicable philosophy statement is show people how to think and decide, but don’t tell them what to think or decide. The strategy offers choices, and gives the involved parties a chance to make independent decisions. When these people are faced with a different situation later, they are likely to apply the same strategy. However, making a decision for them, or showing them what to think makes them consult each time they have an issue, rather than solving it on their own.

I believe that a person making a decision for other people, or showing them what to think has a selfish interest. On the other hand, a person who teaches how to think, prefers having independent thinkers and hopes the involved parties get the best from the situation. Transparency is a key value in the process. There are also past experiences that have helped hammer the values. Growing up, we constantly fought over house chores. Our parents always left a list of things that needed to be done. They didn’t, however, assign specific tasks to my siblings and I. It was up to us to decide who performed what task. We rarely agreed, and most times rushed to do the easier chores and left the more difficult ones. When our parents got home and asked who failed to perform their task when would keep pointing fingers at each other with different excuses. We were all punished on such occasions. We later learned to share the chores and created a schedule on who performed what task on what day. It brought order and agreement amongst us. Our parents also were able to punish the specific person who would abandon their task. It taught us to work on our issues without our parents siding with either of us.

While working with other people, I prefer giving them an outline of things to be done and how they should be done. I then expect them to organize themselves based on their experience, preferences, and discussion amongst themselves. It improves teamwork in an organization. It also creates independence, so that even when the head isn’t there, other employees keep working (Kreitner & Kinicki, 2013). Those I work with should expect guidance, but not telling them what to do. That applies to individual persons, and also a group of persons working in any organization. Leading by example is a leadership style that increases teamwork, and teamwork is the applicable influence tactic.


Cohen-Almagor, R. (2017). President Trump and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.

Kreitner, R. & Kinicki, A. (2013). Organizational Behavior (10th ed.) New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. ISBN-13:9780078029363

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