Why do people act against their own moral standards, yet not feel guilty about it? This publication explores the Social Cognitive Theory of Moral Thought and Action, one of the theories used in understanding behavioral ethics, or the study of why people behave the way they do inside of social settings. The theory illuminates how individuals can morally disengage, convincing themselves that acting unethically is acceptable. Both a theoretical explanation and practical application of the theory in organizational settings are provided.

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