Business Ethics Essay Example
Loyalty is applicable in a relation that is founded on confidence, trust, and goes beyond self-interest. Whistle-blowing is useful in situation where the firm is doing things that will harm the society like great violation of disposal of materials and using sub-standard ingredients to prepare products that may harm the society. Employees have to loyalty to companies that perform their functions ethically with a sense of moral obligation (Das Gupta, 2004). If it is assumed that the employees will never blow the whistle, then there is some harm that they will gloss over but may end up harming themselves since they also belong to the society. They have relatives and friends who make up the society. The employees have an obligation to protect the interests of the society for posterity. However, an employee has to exhaust all internal channels that seek to correct the problem before resorting to whistle blowing. At least a supervisor has to be aware of the problem and the challenge hindering its correction. The whistle blower has to have enough reason to be convinced that whistle-blowing will help in averting any further damage. There should be documented evidence substantiating the likelihood of danger in the acts or act. James reckons that a De George criterion for whistle blowing is too strict in some circumstances whistle-blowing may save the firm from demise (Saee, 2009). The collapse of Enron Corporation can be blamed on absence of a whistle-blower who failed to save the firm in the nick of time. Whistle blowing is not always harmful.
Multinationals become successful because they exploit the resources and people in countries that are less developing. They promote capitalism which enhances unequal distribution of resources. Ethical Universalists understand that there are fundamental principles of wrong and right which go beyond cultural boundaries and multinationals have to observe these fundamental global values or principles. Multinationals are accused of competing unfairly in less developed countries to the disadvantage of the host countries (Corrigan & Farrell, 2011). Multinationals are viewed as main causes of impoverishment and unrest in less developing countries. Moreover, multinational exploit workers, natural resource and repatriate excess profits to their home countries.
De George proposes that multinationals should not engage in direction intentional harm. They have an obligation for a moral minimum. The infant milk that caused deaths of innocent infants has been pointed out as one of the violations of this principle. The utilitarian principle has to be applied where multinationals are responsible for many good things than bad things. Besides, multinationals have to respect human rights of consumers, employees and other people or stakeholders in the host country. These aspects include safety standards, non-discrimination, child labor, and minimum pay. Nike sweatshops have been accused for using children as a source of labor. Multinationals have to take part in the establishment of background institutions like trade unions (Saee, 2009 Multinationals have to obey and respect the local culture and laws that are not against moral norms. International mining companies have been accused for the instability in Eastern Congo in Africa and that they are responsible for funding rebels. This make them benefit from the instability by evading taxes. Such allegations go beyond the utilitarian principle.
A business has an obligation to protect the environment even beyond of what is stipulated in the law. The business has an obligation to the future generation since they depend on the same resources for survival. In the long term, the business has to aim at doing good as opposed to harm considering all consequences (Corrigan & Farrell, 2011). This is referred to as utilitarian perspective. The business has to respect rights of all stakeholders which may go beyond what is stipulated by the law in order to establish good rapport. The business has to maximize benefits while minimizing risk at all costs. Loopholes in the law should not permit any organization to engage in criminal activities. Product safety has to be one of the assurances of the company towards the society. In case of any harm caused to the society, the business will bear the greatest responsibility that will harm is reputation and goodwill. In the case of market failure all parties responsible have to share out the costs and look for ways of avoiding a similar incident (Saee, 2009). Costs for environmental protection have to be distributed equally to all stakeholders. For instance Ford Company understood that the Pinto was less safe and could do anything to change the turn of events. The company went against the moral minimum of doing harm. The consumers had to be sensitized about the risk of using this type of a car.
Das Gupta, A. (2004). Human Values In Management, London: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd
Corrigan, R.H. & Farrell, M.E. (eds). (2011). Ethics: A University Guide, Melbourne: Progressive Frontiers Pubs.
Saee, J. (2009). Ethical challenges confronting entrepreneurs within contemporary global economy: In such of a new world ethics, Journal of Management Systems, 21 (1): 49-59.
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