Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 1 MBA 685 Chapter #2 Introduction to Ethics.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 1 MBA 685 Chapter #2 Introduction to Ethics."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 1 MBA 685 Chapter #2 Introduction to Ethics

2 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 2 Chapter #2 Overview Introduction to business ethics Overview of ethical theories Thinking ethically for business decision making – The PLUS model – Combining ethical theories – Code of Ethics

3 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 3 Nature and Significance of Ethics in Business Decision-Making Ethics: Rational examination of moral beliefs and behavior; the study of morality. – Morality: Standards, conduct, and systems that provide guidance on how to act. Law: Society’s standards and values that are enforceable in court

4 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 4 Is business ethics an oxymoron? Former Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, “Ethics is knowing the difference between what you have a right to do and what is the right thing to do.”

5 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 5 Overview of Ethical Theories 1. Subjective relativism 2. Cultural relativism 3. Divine command theory 4. Kantianism 5. Act utilitarianism 6. Rule utilitarianism 7. Social contract theory

6 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 6 Relativism versus Objectivism: Where “The Good” Exists 1. Subjective relativism 2. Cultural relativism 3. Divine command theory 4. Kantianism 5. Act utilitarianism 6. Rule utilitarianism 7. Social contract theory Relativism Objectivism “The Good” is inside “The Good” is outside

7 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 7 The Workable Ethical Theories: Rational Theories 1.Subjective relativism 2.Cultural relativism 3.Divine command theory 4.Kantianism 5.Act utilitarianism 6.Rule utilitarianism 7.Social contract theory Workable Theories Not a Workable Theory According to the Author

8 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 8 1. Subjective relativism Relativism – No universal norms of right and wrong – One person can say “X is right,” another can say “X is wrong,” and both can be right Subjective relativism – Each person decides right and wrong for himself or herself – “What’s right for you may not be right for me” Case for Well-meaning and intelligent people disagree on moral issues Well-meaning and intelligent people disagree on moral issues Ethical debates are disagreeable and pointless Ethical debates are disagreeable and pointless Case against Blurs distinction between doing what you think is right and doing what you want to do Blurs distinction between doing what you think is right and doing what you want to do Makes no moral distinction between the actions of different people Makes no moral distinction between the actions of different people SR and tolerance are two different things SR and tolerance are two different things Decisions may not be based on reason Decisions may not be based on reason Not a workable ethical theory (according to author) Not a workable ethical theory (according to author)

9 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 9 2. Cultural relativism What is “right” and “wrong” depends upon a society’s actual moral guidelines These guidelines vary from place to place and from time to time A particular action may be right in one society at one time and wrong in other society or at another time Case for Different social contexts demand different moral guidelines Different social contexts demand different moral guidelines It is arrogant for one society to judge another It is arrogant for one society to judge another Morality is reflected in actual behavior Morality is reflected in actual behavior Case against Because two societies do have different moral views doesn’t mean they ought to have different views Because two societies do have different moral views doesn’t mean they ought to have different views Doesn’t explain how moral guidelines are determined Doesn’t explain how moral guidelines are determined Doesn’t explain how guidelines evolve Doesn’t explain how guidelines evolve Provides no way out for cultures in conflict Provides no way out for cultures in conflict Because many practices are acceptable does not mean any cultural practice is acceptable (many/any fallacy) Because many practices are acceptable does not mean any cultural practice is acceptable (many/any fallacy) Societies do, in fact, share certain core values Societies do, in fact, share certain core values Only indirectly based on reason Only indirectly based on reason Not a workable ethical theory Not a workable ethical theory

10 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 10

11 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics Divine command theory (the virtue approach) Good actions: those aligned with God’s will Bad actions: those contrary to God’s will Holy books reveal God’s will. We should use holy books as moral decision-making guides. Case for We owe obedience to our Creator. We owe obedience to our Creator. God is all-good and all-knowing. God is all-good and all-knowing. God is the ultimate authority. God is the ultimate authority. Case against Different holy books disagree Different holy books disagree Society is multicultural, secular Society is multicultural, secular Some moral problems not addressed in scripture Some moral problems not addressed in scripture “The good” ≠ “God” (equivalence fallacy) “The good” ≠ “God” (equivalence fallacy) Based on obedience, not reason Based on obedience, not reason

12 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics Kantianism (the rights approach) Good will: the desire to do the right thing Immanuel Kant: Only thing in the world good without qualification is good will. Reason should cultivate desire to do right thing. Case for Rational Rational Produces universal moral guidelines Produces universal moral guidelines Treats all persons as moral equals Treats all persons as moral equals Workable ethical theory Workable ethical theory Case against Sometimes no rule adequately characterizes an action. Sometimes no rule adequately characterizes an action. There is no way to resolve a conflict between rules. There is no way to resolve a conflict between rules. Kantianism allows no exceptions to moral laws. Kantianism allows no exceptions to moral laws.

13 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 13 Consumer Bill of Rights

14 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 14 Negative Versus Positive Rights Negative right (liberty right): A right that another can guarantee by leaving you alone Positive right (claim right): A right obligating others to do something on your behalf

15 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 15 Discussion Questions 1. In the following (true) scenarios on the next two slides, tell whether the people are interpreting the right being claimed as a negative right or as a positive right. Explain your choice. 2. In each scenario, which kind of right should it be and why?

16 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 16 Scenario A: A man sued his health insurance company because it would not pay for Viagra. He argued that the insurer’s refusal to pay denied his right to a happy sex life.

17 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 17 Scenario B: Two legislators who lost reelection votes sued an organization that ran ads criticizing their right to hold office.

18 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics Act Utilitarianism Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill, 19 th century The best ethical course of action is the one that brings the greatest good for the greatest number – An action is good if it benefits someone – An action is bad if it harms someone Utility: tendency of an object to produce happiness or prevent unhappiness for an individual or a community – Happiness = advantage = benefit = good = pleasure – Unhappiness = disadvantage = cost = evil = pain Principle of Utility (The Greatest Happiness Principle) – An action is right (or wrong) to the extent that it increases (or decreases) the total happiness of the affected parties.

19 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 19 Act utilitarianism - Continued Act utilitarianism applies Principle of Utility to individual actions Act utilitarianism – Add up change in happiness of all affected beings – Sum > 0, action is good – Sum < 0, action is bad Case for Focuses on happiness Focuses on happiness Down-to-earth (practical) Down-to-earth (practical) Comprehensive Comprehensive Workable ethical theory Workable ethical theory Case against Unclear whom to include in calculations Unclear whom to include in calculations Too much work Too much work Ignores our innate sense of duty Ignores our innate sense of duty Susceptible to the problem of moral luck Susceptible to the problem of moral luck

20 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics Rule utilitarianism We ought to adopt moral rules which, if followed by everyone, will lead to the greatest increase in total happiness Rule utilitarianism applies Principle of Utility to moral rules Case for Compared to act utilitarianism, it is easier to perform the utilitarian calculus. Compared to act utilitarianism, it is easier to perform the utilitarian calculus. Not every moral decision requires performing utilitarian calculus. Not every moral decision requires performing utilitarian calculus. Moral rules survive exceptional situations Moral rules survive exceptional situations Avoids the problem of moral luck Avoids the problem of moral luck Workable ethical theory Workable ethical theory Case against All consequences must be measured on a single scale. All consequences must be measured on a single scale. Utilitarianism ignores the problem of an unjust distribution of good consequences. Utilitarianism ignores the problem of an unjust distribution of good consequences. Utilitarianism does not always mean “the greatest good of the greatest number” Utilitarianism does not always mean “the greatest good of the greatest number” That requires a principle of justice That requires a principle of justice What happens when a conflict arises between the Principle of Utility and a principle of justice? What happens when a conflict arises between the Principle of Utility and a principle of justice?

21 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics Social contract theory (The Common Good Approach) Thomas Hobbes – “State of nature” – We implicitly accept a social contract Establishment of moral rules to govern relations among citizens Government capable of enforcing these rules Jean-Jacques Rousseau – In ideal society, no one above rules – That prevents society from enacting bad rules Case for Framed in language of rights Framed in language of rights Explains why people act in self- interest without common agreement Explains why people act in self- interest without common agreement Provides clear analysis of certain citizen/government problems Provides clear analysis of certain citizen/government problems Workable ethical theory Workable ethical theory Case against No one signed contract No one signed contract Some actions have multiple characterizations Some actions have multiple characterizations Conflicting rights problem Conflicting rights problem May unjustly treat people who cannot uphold contract May unjustly treat people who cannot uphold contract

22 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 22 Thinking Ethically for Business Decision Making How exactly should we think through an ethical issue? What questions should we ask? What factors should we consider? The first step is obvious but not always easy: GET THE FACTS! Primary/Direct Stakeholders Secondary/Indirect Stakeholders

23 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 23 Basic Business Decision Making Model Step 1: Define the problem Step 2: Identify alternatives Step 3: Evaluate the alternatives Step 4: Make the decision Step 5: Implement the decision Step 6: Evaluate the decision

24 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 24 Example of an Ethical Filter: The PLUS Model P = Policies P = Policies Is it consistent with my organization's policies, procedures and guidelines? L= Legal L= Legal Is it acceptable under the applicable laws and regulations? U = Universal U = Universal Does it conform to the universal principles/values my organization has adopted? S= Self S= Self Does it satisfy my personal definition of right, good and fair?

25 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 25 Six Steps to Ethical Decision Making Using the PLUS Model Step 1: Define the problem PLUS Step 2: Identify alternatives Step 3: Evaluate the alternatives PLUS Step 4: Make the decision Step 5: Implement the decision Step 6: Evaluate the decision PLUS Ethical Filters

26 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 26 Using Multiple Theories for Ethical Problem Solving 1.What moral rights do the affected parties have, and which course of action best respects those rights? 2.What benefits and what harms will each course of action produce, and which alternative will lead to the best overall consequence? 3.Which course of action treats everyone the same, except where there is a morally justifiable reason not to, and does not show favoritism or discrimination? 4.Which course of action advances the common good? 5.Which course of action develops moral virtues? 6.Other Approaches – The Legality Test – The Golden Rule Test – The Light of Day Test

27 Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 27 Codes of Ethics (Ethics Codes, Ethics Policies, Core Values, Integrity Policies, etc.) Formal statement of ethical principles and rules of conduct – United Technologies – – JMU CoB Faculty Integrity Policy - – JMU Finance Code of Ethics - – Advice from the Ethics Office of Texas Instruments - ethics.aspx ethics.aspx

28 Copyright  2008 by Theresa B. Flaherty, Ph.D. No part of these materials may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without the express written consent of Dr. Theresa B. Flaherty. Copyright  All Rights Reserved


Download ppt "Chapter #2: Introduction to Ethics 1 MBA 685 Chapter #2 Introduction to Ethics."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google