In my personal opinion a moral dilemma is one having to choose between what is right and what is wrong. This could be taken in several different ways, and might not be what others view as the right definition however this definition is in my own words. Moral. 2013. In Merriam-Webster. com. Retrieved April 11, 2013, from http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary/moral, the meaning of moral is “of or relating to principals of right or wrong in behavior. ” When looking at this specific definition you are unable to complete your assessment without also including the definition of dilemma.
Dilemma. 2013. In Merriam-Webster. com. Retrieved April 11, 2013, from http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary/dilemma, a dilemma is “an argument presenting two or more equally conclusive alternatives against an opponent, in other words a usually undesirable or unpleasant choice. ” An example of a moral dilemma that I personally have experienced was choosing whether or not it would be acceptable to call the police and have my sister arrested for theft and possession of prescription medications which she stole from our mother.
I had battled along-side my sister for 15 years with her drug addiction and I had finally come to my limit. I decided that it would be in her and her children’s best interest if she was forced into a rehabilitation situation and become the person that I knew she could be and also be capable of raising her children with the right morals and in the right type of environment. It was one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make in my life, but I believe it was what was best for her. That was in October of 2009 and she has remained drug free ever since and her children are growing and thriving!
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While ethical dilemmas are similar to moral dilemmas, it seems that there is a generous amount of definitions. Upon researching and synthesizing 38 different definitions, Lewis (1985) defines business ethics as comprising the rules, standards, principles, or codes giving guidelines for morally right behavior and truthfulness in specific situations. This tells me that an individual must make the right decision based on the best interest of themselves and/or the company regarding any ethical dilemmas that arise. An example of an ethical dilemma that my husband has recently had to make a ecision on is co-workers cutting corners on their job details and causing machinery to be pushed back for repairs prior to approval of shipment. I am unable to reveal the name of the company, however I can tell you that it is a multi-million dollar company that is international and if a machine went to a customer with parts not working correctly, it would not just be the customer that suffers. This would affect the customer, their state, and possibly more territories. My husband had to make the choice to speak to his supervisor privately and anonymously to get this situation taken care of.
Not only could the machine not work correctly, there could also have been injuries to the other workers in the plant as well as potential injuries to the customer. Appendix C Clarifying Personal Values Each of you will be faced with numerous moral and ethical dilemmas throughout your career. To be prepared to make these ethical decisions, it is helpful to clarify your personal values, and morals before you are faced with an ethical dilemma. Review the following list of values and create a list of the five values most important to you in making decisions. acceptance accomplishment adventure ambition ssertiveness beauty bravery compassion competence conformity creativity customer satisfaction discipline diversity equality fairness flexibility freedom honor humility loyalty obedience order power promise keeping respect responsibility risk taking service success teamwork tradition trust understanding winning | | |List of Five Important Values | |1. | | |Competence | |2. | | | |Diversity | |3. | | | |Respect | |4. | | |Teamwork | |5. | | | |Trust | I think that my personal decision-making process is based on each situation that arises. I would have to say that I usually go with the moral dilemma way of thinking and choose what is right versus what is wrong. When it comes to an employment situation, I have had to make a few tough decisions on the ethical side of things.
I’ve witnessed fellow employees being called nasty names by upper management, customers being treated rudely because of their race or religious beliefs, and individuals with mental disabilities treated with no respect and treated no better than a bee buzzing around someone’s head. It’s not easy to make a decision that can affect so many individuals, but in my eyes, as well as with the morals that my parents raised me with, doing what is right is always the best way to go. I think that when I look at the list that I chose, that I have given myself a pretty close-nit grouping.
I find that when working in any type of industry, it is pertinent to have employees that are competent within their positions. Having a diverse group of employees allows for a larger opinion base and also shows that individuals that are very different in their own personal lives are able to work well together, thus showing the teamwork. Without teamwork, most businesses would fail miserably. It may take several different types of individuals to make a whole, and each of these people have a specific position within the company, but as a whole they ARE the company.
I think that respect is a major factor when looking at business ethics. I do not believe that it matters where you stand within the company. I feel that each person deserves the respect of their fellow employees as well as management, owners, customers, etc. Once all of these factors are met then you have built a trust within the company base that allows for each individual department to depend on the others to carry out their roles so that all the puzzle pieces fit. I personally think that my own values are the reason that I choose right versus wrong. Sometimes it might not be the “best” decision, but morally nd ethically I choose to be open and honest about things that I see or find that are not in the best interest of a company, or even in my own personal life. Making the decision to have my sister arrested for her drug addiction was morally right but it was devastating to her children, my parents, and my own individual family. I chose the moral route of right, but in my mind it felt so wrong. Taking my niece and nephews’ mother away from them was one of the hardest things I have ever done. The decision-making process that I had to go through took a total of 15 minutes (the time it took for me to drive from my home to my parents’ home. I knew that I HAD to make her own up to her mistakes and get the children out of that environment. Just because I did what was morally right, doesn’t make it any different in my heart. I personally don’t think that my personal values differ from that of an organization. I feel that I would make the right choice no matter what the situation. If I knew that a fellow employee was stealing from the company I would turn them in, but I would also hope that because I came forward regarding the situation that the management would not punish me or look at me any differently.
I would not be coming forward because of a dislike for the other person, I would be coming forward because what they were doing would be wrong and the company would suffer from it. I would report any discrimination, theft, or inappropriate behaviors by others if need be. It would not only affect the company, but it would also affect me personally. This assignment has made me look closely at my background and see that I have had to make a lot of tough decisions, as have some individuals very close to me, however I believe that doing what is right will always trump choosing to either ignore it or choosing the wrong way to go.
Looking at the list above, I believe that all of these things are important for any one individual. Without having a lot of these traits, a person might not be the best fit for a company, nor would they be one of those individuals that I would allow in my life, let alone my children’s lives. If I am unable to trust, rely, or respect a person because of their choices, then that person is not somebody who needs to be involved with me or the company that I am working for.
References Trevino, L. , & Nelson, K. (2011). Managing business ethics: Straight talk about how to do it right (5th ed. ). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. Malpas, J. , “Donald Davidson”, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2012 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed. ), URL = . Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary copyright © 2013 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated Lewis, P. V: 1985, 'Defining "Business Ethics": Like Nailing Jello to a Wall', Journal of Business Ethics 4(5), 377-383.
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