Thursday, April 06, 2006

Situational Tax Ethics: Responding to Friends and Co-Workers About Dubious Tax Positions

58 percent of Americans (about seven of twelve) have been around family members, friends or co-workers who discussed an unethical or even illegal strategy for tax preparation. Many had difficulty handling this awkward position: either choosing not to confront or being excessively confrontational. Common reasons for not confronting included "none of my business", lack of interest or fear of reprisal. Author and ethicist Joseph Grenny had the following recommendations: decide how to react--a co-workers brag about evading taxes can be handled differently than a sibling's ignorance of tax law; ask to see what the speaker knows--a possible approach here would be to ask the speaker whether they knew that this might be illegal; share concerns--if the speaker appears to know that the act may be wrong, let them know that you are uncomfortable without accusing or lecturing. The survey was developed by VitalSmarts, a corporate training organization.

An interesting read with what seem to be good ideas.


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