The Ethics of Hardball Can one make an “ethical” decision that is at the same time “good business? Why or why not? Explain your position. Yes, one can make an “ethical” decision that is a good business, because whatever constitutes ethics for one person doesn’t mean the same for another person. In the classical principle of utilitarianism, “an action is right if and only if it produces the greatest balance of pleasure over pain for everyone. ” (Boatright, p. 33) Should businesses be held morally accountable applying different standards than we use to assess others in a society?
Why or why not? Explain your position. Businesses should be held accountable for applying different standards, because businesses have an obligation to do what’s right although moral rights are rights that do not depend on the existence of a legal system, we as humans should have morals, because moral rights derive their force not from being part of a legal system but from more general ethical rules and principles. (Boatright, p. 37) Businesses should be held accountable to keep them from having law suits filed against them and to keep companies from getting a bad image.
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Is it inherently unethical to make business decision that add long-term value to the business and which do not violate law or social convention? Why or why not? Explain your position. It is not unethical for a business to make decisions to add value to the business, because if they didn’t then there would be no planning for the future which is to build the business. As for Home Depot they made the decision to not make a profit on the materials and kept the community supplied with what they needed. The decision they made was a good one for the business and the community in that it made the community react more quickly to the disaster.
The company made a shrewd business decision. What alternatives to Home Depot’s action would you consider more morally appropriate in consideration of the operating situation they faced in which both the community and the business would be better served? Alternately, Home Depot could have lost money on the plywood but the business would not have been better served, and when the business loses money, the community loses. Or they could have done exactly what they did but not marketed it so the local people would have gotten the good pricing but without the criticism of Home Depot being self-serving.
Under what conditions could managers, acting entirely in support of the organization’s economic benefit, make a morally relevant decision? Under the conditions that the community was facing in the aftermath of the disaster, the managers made a moral decision to help the company and the community and that is what they did. Not only by limiting the purchases to avoid the price gouging by re-sellers, and by buying competitively to lessen the impact on the company while giving the community a break and selling the product at cost.
To act ‘entirely in support of the organization’s economic benefit, the manages could have made a set margin, however, one could argue that the increased customer traffic as a result of basic supplies like plywood, roofing materials, and plastic sheering sold at cost would lead to incremental sales as well as customer good will which would help the company in the long run. References: Boatright, J. R. (2009) Ethics and the Conduct of Business (6th ed. ). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. http://www. brainmass. com