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Ethics Honesty

I work for a large company and split my duties between two separate departments. In going over my paycheck, I am certain that I am being paid more than I am supposed to get. I mentioned this to a few friends, and they told me to forget about it since it's the company's problem, not mine. I'm not sure I agree. What do you think?

The confusion over your pay system is indeed the company's problem, but the confusion over ethical behavior is your problem. The fact is that you are being paid more than the agreed-upon amount for your position, and you are taking funds that you have not earned and do not deserve.

There are undoubtedly many people who would simply turn their backs on this situation and pocket the money until the company figures it out. However, something deep inside you is telling you that doing so is wrong. That is why you discussed it with your friends, and that also is why you ignored their advice. Your conscience is saying that this is wrong, no matter how your friends try to rationalize it.

If you are still confused about what to do, which decision would you feel more comfortable explaining to your parents, your children, or your clergyman or clergywoman? Which decision would you like to see on the front page of the newspaper?

Don't forget that when people do good, they often do well. When you tell the appropriate personnel that you are being overpaid, your image in the company is going to be greatly enhanced, and that can be far more profitable than a payroll error.

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