On the Big Reverse and Professional Ethics


On the subject of the December PMWJ editorial titled “The Big Reverse: Politics, Anti-leadership and the Looming Threat to Professionalism” 

10 March 2017

Dear Editor,

In Response to David Pells’ Editorial titled “The Big Reverse: Politics, Anti-leadership and the Looming Threat to Professionalism and Welcome to the February 2017 PMWJ,” published in the February 2017 edition of the PM World Journal.

I commend the opportunity you took to cite the behavior of the US President to draw attention to leadership and ethics. During my many writings and presentations on the subject of ethics I have, as you did so effectively in your editorial, given emphasis to the relationship between ethics, trust, and leadership. Research has consistently shown that without ethics there can be no trust, and there can be no effective leadership.

I currently serve as the volunteer Chair of the PMI Ethics Management Advisory Group; our group is chartered with the responsibility to work as global advocates for PMI members and non-members regarding the PMI Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct. It is interesting to note that the PMI “Code” does not permit us to sit silently by if we become aware of unethical conduct; one of the mandatory standards states that “We report unethical or illegal conduct to appropriate management and, if necessary, to those affected by the conduct.” That Code further states that we require ourselves and our fellow practitioners to “not engage in or condone behavior that is designed to deceive others.” In other words, when we see behavior that is not honest, we must step in.

Thank you for stepping in.

Michael O’Brochta
Virginia, USA