Pinto, J.I. & Bosch, M.J. (2018). Virtues and the common good in human resources management. In Sison, A.J.G., Ferrero, I., & Guitián, G. (Eds.). (2018). Business Ethics: A Virtue Ethics and Common Good Approach. Routledge.

The aim of this chapter is to describe the role HR managers based on virtue ethics in line with Aristotle, Alasdair MacIntyre and the Catholic Social Teaching. Indeed, according to these three approaches to virtue ethics, a responsible HR manager should orient her/his practices to achieve a virtuous work within the firm. In order to define what it is a virtuous work, and in line with an Aristotelian ethics, we will explain that virtuosity is possible when employees act in accordance with their personal capacities in terms of information, knowledge, skills, and habits. Such capacities are what the Aristotelian ethics understands as praxis and it turns into the dimension of work that allows employees to thrive. This dimension of work has to have a leading role for the productive dimension of work (poiesis), not in the opposite way. Moreover, and following MacIntyre's ethics, virtuous work implies the need to achieve goods that are valuable in their selves, i.e. goods of excellence. Such goods are different from instrumental goods –such as money, power, and status– and they allow workers to fulfil and turn any employment into a meaningful work. Instrumental goods are needed in any employment, but they cannot constitute an end in their selves, otherwise work turns into a corruptive (non-virtuous) activity. Finally, for the Catholic Social Teaching´s perspective virtuous work is possible in when HR managers are capable of turning the firm's culture into a context that allows employees to help each other to thrive. As we will explain, this is possible when the firm promotes the principles of human dignity, common good, participation, and subsidiarity among every work policy.


María José Bosch

Fecha de Publicación:

01 de enero del 2018