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Managing Ethics and Social Responsibility

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1 Managing Ethics and Social Responsibility
Chapter 4 Managing Ethics and Social Responsibility 1

2 Three Domains of Human Action
Domain of Codified Law (Legal Standard) Ethics (Social Standard) Free Choice (Personal Standard) Amount of Explicit Control High Low 10

3 Ethics The code of moral principles and values that govern the behaviors of a person or group with respect to what is right or wrong. Codified Law Values and standards that are written into the legal system. 7

4 Free Choice Behavior about which law has no say and for which an individual or organization enjoys complete freedom Example: An individual's choice of a marriage partner or religion. 9

5 Ethics Ethical Dilemma
Obedience is to norms and standards levied by self and/or others. These are unenforceable in a legal sense, but are often powerful. Ethical Dilemma When all choices have been deemed undesirable because of potentially negative ethical consequences, making it difficult to distinguish right from wrong. (The choices also have attractive attributes.) 11

6 Common Ethical Dilemmas
Honesty in advertising and in communications with superiors, clients, and government. Problems relating to special gifts, entertainment, and kickbacks. Overlooking wrong doings of others

7 Criteria for Ethical Decision Making Approaches
Utilitarian Individualism Moral-Rights Justice Practical 13

8 Individualism Approach
Utilitarian Approach Moral behaviors produce the greatest good for the greatest number. Individualism Approach Acts are moral when they promote the individual's best long-term interests (e.g., the “golden rule”). 14

9 Moral-Rights Approach
Human beings have fundamental rights (e.g., free consent, privacy, due process) Justice Approach Standards of equity, fairness, and impartiality. 16

10 Practical Approach May include consideration of any of the other four approaches and what actions will please stakeholders most. 16

11 Factors Affecting Ethical Choices
The Manager Level or stage of moral development Learned Ethics The Organization Systems Culture 41

12 Moral Development Preconventional Level = concerned with external rewards and punishments Conventional Level = conform to the expectations of peers and society (consistent with practical approach to ethical decision making) Postconventional (Principled) Level = individuals develop a personal, internal set of standards and values. (About 20% of adults) 41

13 The Organization Systems Culture Explicit rules and policies
Reward system Culture Common Values Traditions 25

14 Guidelines for Dealing with Ethical Dilemmas
Is it legal? Is it right? Is it beneficial? To whom? How much? Is it harmful? To whom? How much?

15 Guidelines for Dealing with Ethical Dilemmas (cont.)
Would you be willing to allow everyone to do what you are considering? Would you like your family to know? Would you like your decision printed in the newspaper? Have you consulted others who are objective and knowledgeable?

16 Social Responsibility
An Organization taking actions that contribute to society Being a good corporate citizen. 26

17 Stakeholder Model The belief that a business should be operated for the benefit of all who are concerned with it (all “stakeholders” not just the owners). The foundation of Social Responsibility.

18 Organizational Stakeholders
Owners, Investors Employees Suppliers Customers Government Society 27

19 4 Views of Responsibilities of Business
1- Economic Responsibilities: The only Social Responsibility = Profit-Maximizing. 2- Legal Responsibilities: Social Responsibility = Obeying the Law (as well as making a profit) 31

20 3- Ethical Responsibilities
To be ethical, an organization should seek a higher standard than merely obeying the law: e.g., Act with equity, fairness, and impartiality e.g., Respect the rights of individuals e.g., Act for the common good 33

21 4 - Discretionary Responsibilities
Purely voluntary, not mandated by economics, law, or ethics Goes beyond what society expects This is true Social Responsibility 34

22 Social Responsibility Levels
Level of Concern---Likely Behavior Discretionary Proaction Ethical Accommodation Legal Defensive Behavior Economic Anything for profit

23 Why Social Responsibility?
Self-defense - If business is not proactive, the public or government will press for more regulation Obligation - Business exists due to being sanctioned by society - owes debt to society Self-interest - S.R. good for business in long run

24 Arguments Against Social Responsibility
Social expenditures amount to theft of business owners’ equity. Business lacks the ability to pursue social goals. Business would gain too much power if involved in the social domain. (Social issues should be left to those accountable to the voters or religious leaders, etc.)

25 Ethical Leadership By Example
Senior managers must be strongly committed to ethical conduct. 41

26 Code of Ethics A formal statement of the company's values concerning ethics and social issues.
Principle-based: Designed to: Enable the employee to make ethical decisions based on appropriate values e.g., “treat people fairly” or “don’t be dishonest” Policy-based: Outline how to act in specific ethical situations (reducing the need for thinking or shared values): Conflicts of interest Proprietary information Political gifts Equal opportunities 43

27 Organizational Structures to Promote Ethics
Ethics committee = group appointed to monitor company ethics Hot lines- employees can report questionable behavior, possible fraud, waste, or abuse( i.e., Blow the Whistle”) Ethics training programs 45

28 Whistle-Blowing Guidelines: Definition:
The disclosure by an employee of illegal, immoral, or illegitimate practices by the organization. Guidelines: Be sure you are right (keep accurate records) Try to resolve the situation in-house first Consult an attorney before contacting the media, etc. Realize you could be fired Don’t expect to profit financially 46

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