When Selling an Online Ethical Decision Making Class
No. It's not for this guy.
My online ethical decision making class is called "Practical Ethics for Honest People."
A lot of thought went into that name. These were my considerations:
- The title could not be intimidating. Many people expect an ethics class to be something akin to listening to people in togas talking about philosophy. They want something they can use as well as know. Note the first word in the title.
- The second concern was to set aside the suspicion that anyone who wants to take an ethics class may sense that he or she has some deficiencies in that subject. Although ethical decision making can be tough, few people want to admit that they might be anything more than ten steps away from sainthood or that they need the class. That's why the title notes that the class is for "Honest People." And yes, they do need the class.
- There is another reason for the reference to honest people. Except in rare circumstances, an ethics class won't turn around a crook. It can, however, help honest people get even better.
- I also sought to avoid insulting anyone who has been required to take the class. A manager who tells a team "I want you to take an ethical decision making class" may encounter some resistance. Requiring someone to take Practical Ethics for Honest People sounds - and is - far more positive.