Ethical And Moral Issues In Business

639 words - 3 pages

Ethical and Moral Issues in Business

Barbara Douglass

MGT/216

February 5, 2011
Brigitte Culberson-Austin

Ethical and Moral Issues in Business

Ethical and moral issues have been an issue since the dawn of civilization. It has never been more important than how business deals with these issues. Ethics and moral behavior is essential to any successful business and its environment. Morals and ethics are two separate entities, but depend on each other for successful decision making. Sometimes the line between morals and ethics can become blurred and making the right decision can be difficult and not as clear-cut as one would think. Understanding the differences between ethics and morals and moral and ethical behavior is relevant to decision making.
Differences between Ethics and Morals
Understanding the differences between ethics and morals may be difficult for some. At times they can be confused for one another. Morals values are standards of ...view middle of the document...

However, our personal ethics and our business ethics are two separate entities. Applying ethics within the business environment may prove difficult. Business decisions must be viewed in an objective manner. This may blur the lines between our morals and our ethics. To help solve these problems many companies set down a code of conduct or code of ethics by which a company operates and by which employees must abide by while conducting business.
Common Ethical Problems in Business
Some of the difficulty of applying ethics within the business environment is the problems associated with business. Common problems associated with business are customer treatment, hiring practices, working conditions, deceptive advertising, and environmental issues. Take, for example, environmental issues. The world runs on oil, and as depicted in the recent gulf oil spill, how a company handles environmental disasters says a great deal about them and their ethics. Several issues were involved with the disaster that could have been avoided had the company addressed these issues instead of looking at profits or the bottom line. One such problem was the alarm on the blow-out preventer that should have been replaced but was not. Also, the rig had other safety issues from their safety inspections that had never been adequately addressed. The true cost of this disaster may be felt for years.
Conclusion
Ethical and moral issues have been around as long as man has walked the earth. These issues and how business deals with them are indicative of how a business is run. Those operating within ethical norms are the most successful. Ethics and morals are separate issues and within the business environment personal ethics should not dictate business decisions. To arrive at ethical solutions in the business environment one should be objective and view the situation from all sides. However, our moral compass will always guide how these decisions are made. No matter how ethical we are, there are common problems that must be overcome to be successful in business. These problems should be dealt with objectively, compassionately, and legally in order for businesses to be successful.

References
Trevino, L. K., & Nelson, K. A. (2007). Managing business ethics: Straight talk about how to do it right (4th ed). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons

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