In February, the William G. McGowan Charitable Fund, a family foundation dedicated to furthering the compassionate philanthropy and the ethical leadership of William G. McGowan, in partnership with the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), announced the first‑ever Ethical Leader of the Year Award. Candidates were nominated by a colleague, assessed by a selection committee of peers, and evaluated on their principles.
The award will be presented by the William G. McGowan Charitable Fund at the opening session of SHRM’s Annual Conference & Expo next month. The winner will be honored in front of the nation’s leading businesses in New Orleans and will receive a $25,000 cash prize to donate to a nonprofit of their choice.
In HRchat episode 441, I talk with McGowan Fund Executive Director Diana Spencer and Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., President and CEO of SHRM about the award. Listen too, as Johnny shares what to expect in New Orleans and what's coming up for SHRM members later this year.
Questions For Johnny Include:
- What does it mean to you to be a value-driven leader?
- Why did SHRM partner with the Ethical Leader of the Year Award?
- After the nominations have been submitted, the final list of candidates will be determined by a committee of national leaders, including the following judges: Marna C. Whittington, Committee Co-Chair, Leo Denault, Chairman and CEO of Entergy Corporation, Dan Cardinali, President and CEO of Independent Sector, Caroline W. Nahas, Senior Advisor at Korn Ferry, and Chair of the Board of Advisors of the Anderson School of Management at UCLA and you. Talk to me about how the board was selected and what the board represents in terms of inspiring leaders.
- What's coming up for SHRM over the next 12 months? Any announcements you can make on the show today?
Questions For Diana Include:
- How, in the eyes of the students and participating institutions, the evolution of McGowan Fellows Program and the focus on ethical leadership has led the McGowan Fund to create the Ethical Leader of the Year Award?
- The award will be presented at the opening session of SHRM’s Annual Conference & Expo, expected to host over 15,000 attending in person and virtually. Why is the SHRM conference the right place to showcase the award?
- You've said: "We believe that the very best leaders approach ... challenges with a well-defined ethical framework. They use this framework to make their decisions on how to meet the goals of their companies while being responsible and responsive to the needs of society, their customers, and their employees." What advice would you offer to leaders looking to improve and project the ethical framework of their organization?