Undergraduate | Dec 22, 2016 | Laura Besozzi
What would you do? Ethics training comes to class
“What do you think of the people who work in the finance industry?”
When James McCann, lecturer at the Gabelli School of Business, posed this question to his freshman Ground Floor class, the majority responded with words like “greed” and “advantage.”
Changing that perception will require businessmen and businesswomen today and in the future to have a strong sense of ethics.
All business fields have their ethical dilemmas, and finance is no exception. To help students fully understand the complexity of decision-making and the role of ethics in this sector, McCann worked with the CFA Institute and the New York Society of Security Analysts to create an interactive ethics training session for his students.
Students were given four scenarios, such as: “A conservative investment firm is looking for a new hire. When the firm searches one of the candidates’ social-media profiles, it finds pictures that don’t fit with the firm’s code of conduct. How would the firm react, knowing a client could also view these photos?”
Students used their phones to vote for what they thought was the best response. After the votes were in, students explained their own reasoning and compared their answers with what the firm actually chose to do.
Firms are increasingly spending more time helping their employees learn the basics of ethics, so evaluating real ethical dilemmas gives finance students valuable experience.
Interested in trying out this training? Fordham is a university partner of the CFA Institute, which means the CFA will likely be back next year for another interactive ethics session.