Business Ethics, Definition

Programs of legal compliance, empirical studies Into the moral beliefs and attitudes of business people, a panoply of best-practices claims (In the name of their moral merit or their contribution to business success), arguments for (or against) mandatory worker participation In management, and attempts at applying traditional ethical theories, theories of justice, or theories of the state to rims or to the functional areas of business are all advanced as contributions to business ethics-?even and especially in its academic literature.

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These projects vary considerably and often seem to have little in common other than the conviction, held by those who pursue them, that whatever each is pursuing is business ethics. This entry focuses generally on academic business ethics, more particularly on the philosophically-informed part of business ethics, and most particularly on the constellation of philosophically-relevant questions that Inform the main conversation ND ongoing disagreement among academic business ethicists.

It covers: (1) the history of business ethics as an academic endeavor; (2) the focus on the corporation In academic business ethics; (3) the treatment of the employment relation In academic business ethics; (4) the treatment of transnational Issues In academic business ethics; and (5) criticism of the focus and implicit methodology of academic business ethics. The corporate focus is evident in the titles of early works of academic business ethics that have done much to shape the subsequent discussion in the field.

Tom Donaldson Corporations and Morality (1982) and Patricia Wrasse’s Persons, Rights, and Corporations (1985) take business ethics to be concerned centrally with questions about the corporation’s proper role in and relationship to the social order. These questions, taken up by the field and continuing to inform Its main conversation, are said to surround the “moral status of the corporation,” by which Is meant typically one or both of: (1) Is the corporation a moral agent, distinct from the persons who compose It? 2) Morally, how or In whose Interests ought the corporation to be managed? Seeing the large, publicly-traded corporation as the key actor in business, most academic business ethicists understand the foundational normative question of their discipline to be that of how and in whose interests corporations ought to be governed. Over the last two decades, the main attempts to answer this foundational normative question have been understood as constituting a ‘shareholder-stakeholder debate’ in business ethics.

Originating in the work of R. Edward Freeman (1984), stakeholder theory is widely regarded among academic business ethicists as the most significant theoretical instruct in their discipline. Normative ethical stakeholder theory articulates the view that a business firm ought to be managed in a way that achieves a balance among the Interests of all who bear a substantial relationship to the firm-?Its stakeholders. In Freeman’s account, the very purpose of the firm Is coordination of and Joint service to Its stakeholders.

Marabou, Alexei, “Business Ethics”, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Fall 2008 Edition), Edward N. Azalea (deed. ), Retrieved September 4, 2011 from . Business ethics is the behavior that a business adheres to in its daily dealings with the world. The ethics of a particular business can be diverse. They apply not only to how the business interacts with the world at large, but also to their one-on-one dealings with a single customer. Many businesses have gained a bad reputation Just by being in business.

To some people, businesses are interested in making money, and that is the bottom line. It could be called capitalism in its purest form. Making money is not wrong in itself. It is the manner in which some businesses conduct themselves that brings up the question of ethical behavior. Good business ethics should be a part of very business. There are many factors to consider. When a company does business with another that is considered unethical, does this make the first company unethical by association?

Some people would say yes, the first business has a responsibility and it is now a link in the chain of unethical businesses. Many global businesses, including most of the major brands that the public use, can be seen not to think too highly of good business ethics. Many major brands have been fined millions for breaking ethical business laws. Money is the major deciding factor. If a company goes not adhere to business ethics and breaks the laws, they usually end up being fined. Many companies have broken anti-trust, ethical and environmental laws and received fines worth millions.

The problem is that the amount of money these companies are making outweighs the fines applied. Billion dollar profits blind the companies to their lack of business ethics, and the dollar sign wins. A business may be a multi-million seller, but does it use good business ethics and do people care? There are popular soft drinks and fast food restaurants that have been fined time and time again for unethical behavior. Business ethics should eliminate exploitation, from the sweat shop children who are making sneakers to the coffee serving staff who are being ripped off in wages.

Business ethics can be applied to everything from the trees cut down to make the paper that a business sells to the ramifications of importing coffee from certain countries. In the end, it may be up to the public to make sure that a company adheres to correct business ethics. If the company is making large amounts of money, they may not wish to pay too close attention to their ethical behavior. There are many companies that pride themselves in their correct equines ethics, but in this competitive world, they are becoming very few and far between.

Crystal, G. (2010, August 22) What is business ethics? Retrieved September 4, 2011, from http://www. Weeklies. Com/what-is-business-ethics. HTML values that govern decisions and actions within a company. In the business world, the organization’s culture sets standards for determining the difference between good and bad decision making and behavior. In the most basic terms, a definition for business ethics boils down to knowing the difference between right and wrong and choosing to do what is right.

The phrase ‘business ethics’ can be used to describe the actions of individuals within an organization, as well as the organization as a whole. A company’s managers play an important role in establishing its ethical tone. If managers behave as if the only thing that matters is profit, employees are likely to act in a like manner. A company’s leaders are responsible for setting standards for what is and is not acceptable employee behavior. It’s vital for managers to play an active role in creating a working environment where employees are encouraged and rewarded for acting in an ethical manner.