“I hope it won’t happen to me!” Hospitality and tourism students’ fear of difficult moral situations as managers
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionMarnburg, E. (2006) ‘‘I hope it won’t happen to me!’’ Hospitality and tourism students’ fear of difficult moral situations as managers. Tourism Management , 27(4), pp. 561–575 10.1016/j.tourman.2005.02.001
In order to organize ethical education for future managers in the hospitality and tourism industry, an interesting study is to look into how students conceptualize the moral ordeals they think they will meet in their future management positions. Hospitality and Tourism students at the Norwegian School of Hotel Management, Stavanger University, were given a group assignment to write stories (narratives) about managers who were confronted with ethical dilemmas—a situation they could face as future managers. In order to make an explorative study of the narratives, an analytical categorization model based on former research in business ethics was constructed. This model focuses on what types of ethical dilemmas are described, who is involved in the situation, situational factors, individual attributes, and who is to blame for the dilemma appearance. Most of the dilemmas described in the histories were general business ethical issues and the students focused mainly on problems between superiors and subordinates within the organizations. The analyses revealed that the students have a sound conception of how moral dilemmas were elicited and of social reactions within the organization. The students also showed a high degree of self-insight and were generally skeptical of top management's decisions or lack thereof. However, the analyses also revealed that the students’ implicit theories about management included harsh expectations from the organizations and that individualistic and lone managers had to bear all the problems on their shoulders. Possible implications of the findings are discussed in relation to professional practice, education and future research.
This is an electronic copy of an article; made available from Tourism management. Marnburg, E. (2006) ‘‘I hope it won’t happen to me!’’ Hospitality and tourism students’ fear of difficult moral situations as managers. Tourism Management , 27(4), pp. 561–57. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S026151770500018X. Copyright 2006, with permission from Elsevier.