Aristotle was one of the philosophers who spent a great deal of their time in defining and explaining ethics since he believed that ethics was a science whose practicality was crucial to mankind. In this paper, we shall discuss the ideas of Aristotle pertaining to the civic relationships including the virtues, happiness, justice, deliberation and friendship. In the second part of the paper, we shall also discuss how these ideas are being applied to the workplaces that are considered to be among the best ones.
Civic Friendship and Justice -- ideas and arguments of Aristotle
The framework of friendship that was drawn out by Aristotle demonstrates a relationship between personal and civic friendship. Aristotle claimed that in order to have a good life, it is not only important for a person to have intimate relationships at the personal level, but it is also important for that person to have civic friendship (Cooper, 1977). According to Aristotle, there is a need for civic friendships in the society for the maintenance of practicing of law and justice in any country or society. Apart from this, this kind of friendship also plays a role in the cultivation of friendships at personal levels that find their basis on virtue. To make this argument seem more realistic and convincing for people, Aristotle said that personal friendships that are based on virtue play their part as independent checkers of any potential corruption or intrusion in the law of the state (Galston, 1994). On the other hand, when people consider each other as their civic friends, they come together on one platform to discuss the matters of the community so that the issues can be resolved and there can be a better public policy that would benefit all the people of the state and the community.
It should be noted here that throughout the arguments that have been presented by Aristotle, he has made a careful yet clear distinction between the political communities and other kinds of communities (Schwarzenbach, 1996). There are two criteria that have been mentioned by Aristotle for distinguishing the political community. The first criterion is the common system of laws, courts and a common perception of justice. The second criterion is the care that citizens have for their fellow citizens. At this point we need to look at the factors that need to be there in order for the two criteria to be met (Ferguson, 1972). As for the first criterion to be met, it is important for the citizens to be aware of the system of their constitutions, institutions and what the community expects from them as a part of the society and as a citizen of the community. When it comes to fulfillment of the second criterion, there is a need for the citizens to commit that they would uphold the normative attitude that is required for the development of the crucial qualities of character.
According to Aristotle, the connection between the civic and personal friendship is actually very strong. He argues that to the lawmakers, friendship is more important as compared to justice. Aristotle explained this argument by saying that when two men become friends with each other, they do not feel the need for justice (Frede, 1987). On the other hand, many other philosophers do not agree with this statement since they believe that justice forms the basis of any relationship in any society and they put forth the question that how justice could be related to friendship (Rawls, 1971, p3).
Aristotle argues that when friendship becomes deep between two people, they do not find the need for justice. This is because in friendship, people care for their more than they care for themselves. They make sure that their friend is happy and that his well-being is maintained. Therefore, for people who believe in true friendship, they will never think of their own benefit and not about the benefit of their friends. Moreover, at many occasions, these people might also put the interest of their friends before their own interests. Therefore, justice automatically prevails. This is one of the main reasons why Aristotle laid great emphasis of civic relationship so that every citizen of the state could be friends with the others and guard their interests.
When we talk about the advantages of civic friendship, we should take into consideration the fact that civic friendship leads to the establishment of a single platform. On this platform, the citizens of the society come together and discuss what think about the public policy that has already been devised by the lawmakers. In this process, decisions are made by consensus so that peace prevails in the society and everyone benefits from these decisions.
The relationship of Virtue and Happiness
Aristotle believed that all aspects of ethics were interrelated with each other. He implied in his arguments that without the presence of one aspect, the others cannot function properly. One of the ideas that have been explained by Aristotle as a part of the ideas of the civic relationship is virtue. It should be noted here that virtue has a direct relationship between good laws. It is the duty of the lawmakers to make sure that the laws are such that they oblige the people to develop good traits in their personality. When people keep on practicing the good laws, these virtues become a part of their character. Aristotle also argued that without having a good character (sound virtues); a man cannot establish good relationships with other citizens of the state.
Now we shall discuss the relationship of virtue with happiness that has been implied in the arguments of Aristotle. When a person has good virtues and a good character and believes in doing good to the other people, he or she will automatically also attain good in his or her life. It should be noted here that not all the people find happiness in the same kinds of things. However, the state of happiness for everyone is the same. Happiness is considered to be the final destination where a person wants to reach. There is no goal or objective that lies beyond this limit that is termed as happiness, according to Aristotle. Some people find happiness in wealth, some in love while the others want to consider honor to be their happiness.
Great Place to Work
Great Place to Work is an organization that works to improve the standings and reputation of different organizations and companies so that their employees enjoy their work and consider their workplace to be the best and to also improve the clientage of any particular company. There are certain traits that this organization seeks to establish in other companies and firms so that they become the best place to work for people. Most of these traits find their basis on the basic ethics of relationship that have been explained by Aristotle as well as other philosophers.
From the point-of-view of the employee, a great place to work is the one in which he or she can enjoy a good relationship with the management and the fellow employees and not the one in which there are multiple benefits and facilities. It should be noted here that the key and common factor around which all relationships revolve is in fact trust. Therefore, the most important thing that employees look for in their workplace is trust that the company should have in their employees. Moreover, the employees also want the company to take pride in them and appreciate their work. Apart from just the management, they also want their counterparts and their colleagues to acknowledge and appreciate their work and dealings. The third and one of the most important things that employees look for at their workplace is the crowd. This implies that employees really want to work in an environment where everyone is friendly and makes the workplace a place filled with fun and enthusiasm.
From the above discussion, it will not be wrong to conclude that trust is the basic and the most important factor that makes any workplace the best workplace for the employees. When the company will place its trust in its employee, it will give him respect and this will boost the confidence of the employee and he will try his best to give his best each time so that he can prove his credibility. When the management of a company will treat its employee with respect, the other employees of the firm will automatically start respecting that employee and therefore that place will become the best workplace for that particular employee.
From the point-of-view of a manager, the best workplace is the one in which all the objectives are met in time. But, what the managers consider even more important than this is the fact that the employees are giving their best and that the management can trust the employees. Yet again, trust a huge role to play to make any workplace the best from the point-of-view of the manager. The manager would also…