Presentation on theme: "Business Ethics & Social Responsibility"— Presentation transcript:
1 Business Ethics & Social Responsibility Ch.4 - Glencoe
2 What is Ethics?Ethics – is the set of moral principles by which people conduct themselves personally, socially, or professionally.Business Ethics – is a set of guidelines about how a business should conduct itself.Must operate legally, ethically, and humanely
3 History Spotlight March 26, 1911 146 workers – mostly young Eastern European women – died in a fire at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Company in NYCOne of the worst industrial tragedies in US historyInadequate exit doors and fire escapesOvercrowded factoryLed to people jumping to their deaths or burning aliveSweatshops – are factories that have unsafe working conditions, treat workers badly, and pay poorly
4 Legal ResponsibilityOccupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) – is a division of the Department of Labor that sets and enforces work-related health and safety rulesOther independent agencies:protect consumersmonitor broadcast communicationsaddress discrimination in the workplace
5 Legal ResponsibilityMost business police themselves by distributing a code of ethicsCode of Ethics – is a set of guidelines for maintaining ethics in the workplaceCan cover everything from employee behavior to environmental safetyProfessional groups, such as doctors, lawyers, journalists, and teachers, have their own codes
6 Off the Beaten PathUp for longboard surf contest at Guethary? What about mountaineering at Yosemite? Before you surf or climb, Patagonia – the outdoor outfitter – asks you to first remember nature.Why should a company make a vested interest in nature over its product?
7 Ethics as Good Business Operating with unethical business practices can mean:a business is lyingoffering merchandise it knows to be substandardTreating customers unfairlyViolate government regulations = fine or jail timeViolate company code of ethics = fired or lose licenseTreating employees unfairly can affect efficiency
8 Important Ethical Questions Endless series of relationships:Buyer & sellerEmployer & employeeBusiness & governmentBusiness & societyWhen considering a questionable course of action, ask yourself:Is it against the law? Does it violate company or professional policies?What if everyone did this? How would I feel if someone did this to me?Am I sacrificing long-term benefits for short-term gains?
9 Making Decisions on Ethical Issues Identify the ethical dilemmaDiscover alternative actionsDecide who might be affectedList the probable effects of the alternativesSelect the best alternatives
10 Review How do companies benefit by enforcing their own code of ethics? Why does it pay to treat customers ethically?What are some important ethical questions to ask?
11 How does the consumer pay for a company’s inventions? Off the Beaten PathAs the designer of a fleece jacket made from a 2-liter soda bottle, Patagonia distributes clothing and equipment that’s environmentally responsibility.How does the consumer pay for a company’s inventions?
12 Social Responsibility Social Responsibility – is the duty to do what is best for the good of societyTakes into consideration all that business does or does not to solve problems of societyBusiness have an ethical obligation to:Provide safe productsCreate jobsProtect the environmentContribute to the overall standard of livingConflict of Interest – is when a business is tempted to put profits before social welfareExample: CDs being stolen = charging more for products
13 Responsibility to Customers Food and Drug Administration (FDA) - a government agency, protects consumers from dangerous or falsely advertised productsExample: 1982 John & Johnson - poisonous TylenolCost = $100 million dollars
14 Responsibility to Customers Companies conspire to control a market segment (unethical behavior)Consumers have less choice and pay moreExample: 1940s, major film studios – owned all theaters which resulted in the smaller studios unable to show films (but were still able to make)
15 Responsibility to Employees Business provide work experienceDevelop skills and confidence levels to continue successVolunteerism is another way business tackle societal problemsBusiness have a social responsibility to create jobsProvide safe working conditions, equal treatment, and fair pay
16 Responsibility to Employees Government has created laws to protect workers from child labor abuses to the rights of workers to organizeEqual Pay Act – (passed in 1964) requires that men and women be paid the same wages for doing equal workAmericans with Disabilities Act – bans discrimination against persons with physical or mental disability
17 What are social issues you’re interested in pursuing? Off the Beaten PathPatagonia believes if you bear witness to an injustice, you must take action. Become an environmental activist by writing letters to the editor of a local newspaper, shopping selectively, boycotting, and reducing personal consumption.What are social issues you’re interested in pursuing?
18 Responsibility to Society Polluting the Environment = ethical business issueEnvironmental Protection Agency (EPA) – a federal agency, created in 1970, that enforces rules that protect the environment and control pollutionSets pollution standards set by the government for air, water, or landExamples: The Body Shop – biodegradable materials, The Los Angeles Times – recyclable paper and soy-based ink, Honda & Toyota – eco-friendly cars
19 Review Define social responsibility. What is conflict of interest? What do companies adopt in the workplace to treat their workers fairly?
20 What government agency has a responsibility to society? Off the Beaten PathPatagonia responsibility takes a stand against genetically modified organisms (GMO). Its position states that companies must be held accountable if any GMO released into the environment causes damage.What government agency has a responsibility to society?