Comment on the following. Provide your own opinion.
1.Ethics is not a recent discovery; over the centuries philosophers have developed universal approach to defining ethics.
2. Business ethics is a special set of ethical rules different from ethics in general and applicable only to business.
3. There exists a set of ethical rules that all societies share.
4. If a society's ethical rules say that dishonesty is unethical and immoral, then anyone in business who is dishonest with employees, customers, creditors, stockholders, or competitors is acting unethically and immorally.
5. The major purpose of business is to make profit, but following business ethics norms usually prevents companies from making considerable profit.
6. High ethical performance also protects the individuals who work in business. Employees resent invasions of privacy (such as unjustified polygraph tests) or being ordered to do something against their personal convictions (such as "midnight dumping" of toxic wastes) or working under hazardous conditions (such as entering unventilated coal mines).
7. Businesses that treat their employees with dignity and integrity reap many rewards in the form of high morale and improved productivity. People feel good about working for an ethical company because they know they are protected along with the general public.
8. To avoid unethical practices companies should avoid competition.
9. To run the good business in modern scenario one has to develop and follow ethics.
10. One of the major principles of business ethics is “Do no harm”. Thus, business firms and their employees are expected to observe this common-sense ethical principle.
5. Are the following practices ethical or unethical? Give your reasons. You may need the expressions from the table below.
to exhibit high level of ethical / unethical performance; to hold ethical responsibility;
to avoid ethical responsibility; to be a clear example of unethical practices
1. When orders dropped in one small manufacturing company, the supervisor knew she would have to lay off a loyal hardworking employee in two months. Company rules did not allow her to tell the employee in advance, for fear he would quit while still needed.
2. Twice within a five-year period, Johnson & Johnson protected its customers by recalling stocks of Tylenol capsules when poison was found in some Tylenol bottles on store shelves. In a similar case, Parker Brothers voluntarily withdrew its all-time best-selling toy when two children choked to death after swallowing some of its parts. Both companies spent millions of dollars on the recalls.
3. One New York apparel vendor says he lost a 54 million account with one of the nation's largest retailers because he, unlike one competitor, didn't bribe the buyer with $20,000 cars and pricey stereo systems.
4. The best-qualified person for the post of Sales Manager is a female. However, a man has been appointed as far as customers prefer men.
5. One advertising company stresses its honesty, fairness, and ethical business behaviour. At the same time it has factories where wages are very low.
6. Read the passage about unethical marketing. Comment on Nestle’s practice.
Boycotts by ethically motivated consumers can cost big brands billions of euros a year, according to a recent report. Consumers may deliberately avoid in products from companies that they believe act wrongly. A good example is the international boycott of powdered baby milk which followed the publication of a study in the British Medical Journal in 2003. The study revealed that a number of food giants, including Nestle of Switzerland, violated an international code of conduct when they sold their products to some African countries. Very often, the products contained no instructions for the preparation or storage of powdered milk, and no warning against the health hazards of inappropriate use. More importantly, they did not include a statement that breast milk, besides being free, is far more nutritious for newborn babies. Today Nestle has a clear policy on the recommended use of powdered baby milk in developing countries.