Before we discuss the importance of ethics in business, it is very essential to examine a prominent theory when conducting business ethics and that is utilitarianism. This theory accounts for the concepts of duty or obligation, rights, and justice. It is routine that the utilitarianism theory is divided up into two groups. These two groups are that of teleological and deontological theory. The teleological approach deals with consequences. “It states that whether an action is right or wrong depends on the consequences of that action” (DeGeorge, 2010, P. 2) The deontological theory, in contrast to teleological theories such as utilitarianism, deny that consequences are relevant to determining what we should do. “Deontologists typically propose that we have a duty to perform certain acts not because of some benefit to ourselves or others, but because of the nature of these actions or the rules from which they follow” (Boatright, 2009, P. 31). According to the textbook, individuals who mix the teleological and deontological approaches might be called ethical pluralist.
The aforementioned information is very necessary to understand how to answer the question of the importance of ethics in business. The ethical theory provides a baseline for what we expect the standards of ethics to be. It is very apparent that we has human beings would come to a cohesive agreement that business ethics is important. This is because we assume that it is better to be right than wrong, moral than immoral, good than bad or just than unjust. In reality this is not a very acceptable answer because it fails to go into detail why we think it is better.
The only evidence proves being good is better than being bad is religion, the government, and our elders. It may seem that this response is an iota short of being loquacious; however, ethics in business can be so ambiguous you have to consider all the variables to understand how ethics are viewed in our culture. The complexities of ethics in business are something that even ancient scholars possessed a challenging time understanding how to couple ethics with society. Nevertheless, ethics in business is very important because the rimary goal should be to protect people and society. In my opinion ethics is very important in business especially when it relates to being ethically correct with customers and employees. Customers and employees position themselves as the foundation and framework of any company. Therefore, practicing ethical behavior with those two parties should be considered fundamental. The society in which we live money is the leading force for survival, security, and classism. In most cases this is the motive that drives unethical behavior.
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Personally, I believe that ethics is very important in business because it holds executives accountable for unethical behavior. Even if you are in business and you have no compassion for the employees employed by the company or the customers, the mere fact that being unethical in business can sometimes jeopardize the welfare of the company. For example the beech-nut company who were accused of producing bogus apple juice, that in turn was nothing more that sugar water, suffered enormous scrutiny because of their deception to customers and they could not defend whether the apple juice was healthy for babies or not.
The lack of ethics that were displayed in this case and the uncertainties regarding the health hazard prevented Beech-Nut from being a company with longevity. In conclusion, having strong ethics in business would be more conducive than detrimental to the company. Therefore, being ethical in business shows society that your company can be trusted and people would be more inclined to do business with your company. Discuss the problem of assigning monetary value to things. How could it be argued that it is? Appropriate to assign monetary value to things like friendship, love, and life?
The problem of assigning monetary value to things derives from the cost-benefit analysis. The primary use for this method is to use monetary units to articulate the benefits as well as disadvantages of a project. The cost benefit analysis is typically used by economist to determine allocation of resources. The cost benefit analysis has been frowned upon on many different levels. This is because not all costs and benefits have an easily determined monetary value. This is the problem with assigning monetary value to things.
This is because placing a dollar value on some goods reduces the perceived value. For example, there are plenty of diamonds that have a price value that exceeds that cost of a college education. Could it be a possibility that consumer’s value diamonds more than a college education? If so that would be preposterous. According to John R. Boatright, some goods that have been place with monetary value have been distorted by various factors, therefore, the price of these goods do not mirror their true value. Furthermore, assigning monetary value to things people deem impossible are not impossible.
This is because we speak with our dollars. The experts in cost benefit analysis began to dodge the problems with assigning value to noneconomic goods by fostering a technique called shadow pricing. This technique showed experts that even though individuals felt it was inappropriate to come up with an arbitrary number to place value on noneconomic goods, they knew that people would pay for what they value. For example people pay for peace and quiet by means of vacations and suburban living, and people also require higher pay for more risky occupations.
In reality, the problem with assigning monetary value to noneconomic goods has many complexities due individuality. Every individual believes and value things differently. It just so happen that some things we come together as a people and cohesively value things on the same level, and because of individuality some values standalone. In opposition, it could be argued that it is appropriate to assign monetary value to things like friendship, love and life because some applications of cost benefit analysis require that a value be placed on things like a human life.
This is so all of the variables can be in place when determining how much to spend on prenatal care to improve the rate of infant mortality, or reducing the amount of cancer causing emissions from factories to name a few. We even justify the appropriateness of assigning monetary value to love by adding prenuptials to our marital agreements. This exposes the expression that money is valued at a higher level than love. Moreover, friendship is also a noneconomic good that could have monetary value. If you had a friend that asked you for a dollar, more than likely you would allow your friend to have a dollar.
However, if you friend asked for five hundred dollars, contingent upon your relationship with that friend five hundred dollars may supersede the way you value that friend. What is whistle-blowing? Why might it be considered ethically problematic? Why might it be considered morally justified? According to John Boatright the author of Ethics and the conduct of business six edition, whistle-blowing can be defined as the release of information by a member or former member of an organization that is evidence of illegal and /or immoral conduct in the organization or conduct in the organization that is not in the public interest.
This is a very succinct point of view because there are multiple components of whistle-blowing. First, to understand clearly whistle-blowing can only be done by a member of the organization. That member is fully recognized as a whistle-blower once they have observed a crime, notifies the police, and then witnesses in court. In addition, whistle-blowing usually contains information that is nonpublic and the whistle-blower presumes that the nonpublic information that they have will captivate spectators. Furthermore, the evidence usually contains some form of misconduct and inappropriate behavior.
Once the whistle-blower has the information, it must be released outside the proper channels of communication. For instance, most companies have a policy to inform upper management if u see suspicious activity to report to them and it will be confidential. Some companies have ombudsman for handling employee complaints. Recognize that whistle-blowing does not have to go public because there are internal whistle-blowers as well as external whistle-blowers. However, whether internal or external whistle-blowing it must be voluntary and it must be quality information that would evoke change.
The purpose of whistle-blowing must be undertaken as a moral protest with a motive to correct something that is wrong and not to seek revenge or personal advancement. Whistle blowing could be considered ethically problematic because when you first approach the whistle-blowing concept it lucidly displays disloyalty. It illustrates an employee employer relationship gone wrong. This would be comparable to a mother broadcasting negative information about a child of theirs. Employees are under obligation to not share information with individuals outside the company, unless protecting oneself or a third party person is involved.
Also, whistle-blowing might be considered ethically problematic because as an employer when you extend someone the offer of working for and with your company, you expect them to always be in favor of the best of the company. Sometimes companies mess up and do not want every growing pain to be played out in the public. Whistle-blowing might be considered morally justified because people feel that the whistle-blower is holding the company to the standard that they bought into once they became a member of the organization. Whistle-blowers are also morally justified because they are ultimately protecting the public.
They are shedding light on information that we as consumers would have never known that that behavior was be exhibited in that specific company. Whistle-blowing is also justifiable when the whistle-blower causing a disturbance that would save lives and protects humanity. Holistically, society will consider a whistle blower reasonable if the consumer felt they have been or would have been affected by the company’s unethical behavior. Is ethics relevant to the role as a manager? Discuss ethical management and the management of ethics. It is of high significance that people comprehend the importance of being ethical.
Some argue that being ethical in business is no different than being ethical in private life. There has even be some rationality that all managers need just need to be ethical people and not have any specialized training skills or knowledge in the area of ethics. In my opinion, it is quite radical for people to assume that if you are typically an ethical person you would perform ethically in the role of management. Although we can be in agreement that there is no separation between business ethics and personal ethics, we must realize that some business situations arise that are not easily addressed by ordinary ethical rules.
Ethics is relevant to the role as a manager because sometimes management obligations conflict with personal morals or ethics. Case in point, a manager may be forced into the position of terminating an employee for the good of the company with no regard on the impact that will have on the employee lifestyle. A manager may also conclude that it morally wrong for terminating an employee for inadequate reasoning. However, if that termination is in the best interest of the company, then that termination needs to take place.
This could go against personal ethical principles a person might obtain, but for the betterment of the company this is considered ethical behavior Furthermore, when a manager is committed to ethical behavior, they have a responsibility to different parties and must consider a wide range of interest. For example, when a manager rejects the promotion of a friend who happens to be an employee or terminating n employee may be the proper channels to follow, however, all variables are to be considered. Moreover, it is reasonably difficult to understand a manager’s role and their relevance to ethics because we need specific management type.
There are several different levels of management, top, middle and lower level management. However, top management are the managers that ethical behavior is expected from the most. This is because high level managers are expected to make ethical decisions about strategy and policies. Ethical management and the management of ethics have very distinctive differences. Ethical management is acting ethical as a manager by doing the right thing. Maintaining proper ethical behavior is conducive for individual success as well as corporate success.
Because of ethical misconduct, it has ended promising careers and firms have been extremely harmed furthermore destroyed by the behavior exhibited by a few individuals. There is an old saying that says “a few bad apples can spoil the bunch”, which can be translated into ethical management as a few bad mangers can destroy a company. These predicaments result from misconduct or even committing illegal activity. The management of ethics is acting effectively in situations that have an ethical aspect. These situations occur in both the internal and external environment of a business firm.
Internally, organizations unite employees together through myriad rules, procedures, policies, and values that must be carefully managed. However, effective organizational functioning also depends on gaining the acceptance of the rules, policies, and other guides, and this acceptance requires a perception of fairness and commitment. In order to practice both ethical management and the management of ethics it is necessary for all managers to possess some specialized knowledge in regards to ethics. Many ethical issues have a factual background that must be understood.
In short, to make sound ethical decisions and to implement them in a corporate environment are skills that come with experience and training. Some managers make mistakes because they fail to see the ethical dimensions of a situation. Other managers are unable to give proper weight to competing ethical factors or to see other people’s perspectives. Thus a manager may settle a controversial question to his or her satisfaction, only to discover that others still disagree. Even the most ethical managers must rethink their own personal beliefs about how business should be conducted.
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