LS312: Ethics and the Legal Environment
April 18, 2012
As an interested stakeholder, Jane is working for R&S Electronic Service Company as head of payroll. She is concerned about her job security since this is her first job since college. Brad is the owner of R&S and wants his employees to be happy and have a profitable company. Eddie is the general manager and has the authority to hire and fire Jane. Greg is Eddie’s brother working as a service technician who is receiving higher commissions for this work. The dilemma here is that Greg is receiving special treatment because Eddie is his brother. Greg is getting the easier work ...view middle of the document...
Eddie has a right to terminate Jane but not if he is firing her because Greg is getting paid a higher commission he shouldn’t be getting. To fire Jane would be in violation of societal expectations of fairness (Kaplan EGuide, Chp. 3).
It seems more than anything in this case the brother relationship is nepotism. This is when employers favor family members and give them preferential treatment. There is no federal law against nepotism but it does lead to At-Will Employment violations and discrimination violations (Nepotism in the Workplace).
Using the ethical theories in this case Eddie’s motives do not seem pure, meaning the means do not justify the end result. Kant’s imperative theory is ethical if the act is a universal norm. Most companies that have family members working together receive different treatment compared to the employees. So this is a universal norm paying family members differently. But, to threaten Jane is not a pure motive and this is not ethical (Kaplan EGuide, Chp. 1).
Using the utilitarianism theory the good doesn’t seem to outweigh the bad in this case. Paying Greg a higher commission is not benefiting anyone but Greg. There is no greater good for the greatest number of people. The utilitarianism theory is ethical when it benefits more than one person which in this case it is only to Greg’s advantage to be paid a high commission (Kaplan EGuide, Chp. 1).
Using the right’s theory individual rights is not being violated. Eddie is paying Greg a higher commission and telling Jane not to say anything but no one’s rights are violated. Jane has the freedom to tell if she wants even though she will lose her job. In this theory it states that individuals could take in consideration and protect the rights of others and still benefit themselves. That is what is happening in this case where Greg is getting paid a higher commission and no one’s...