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Why Ethical Responsibilities Go Beyond Legal Compliance Essay

1.Explain why ethics is important in the business environment. Ethics is important not only in business but in all aspects of life because it is the vital part and the foundation on which the society is build. A business/society that lacks ethical principles is bound to fail sooner or later. While many businesses have codes of ethics, the words written in a formal code are valuable only if their intent is reflected in the actions of the people who represent the organization. A business cannot be any more – or less – ethical than the people who run it and who work for it. Within a company, people take their cues regarding the behaviors that are acceptable based on how they see the company’s leaders acting and the behaviors that they see being rewarded in their peers. Businesses that are managed by leaders who conduct themselves in an ethical manner and who reward employees for doing what is right are much more likely to be characterized by a positive ethical culture.

2.Explain the nature of business ethics as an academic discipline Ethic is a set of moral principles or values which is concerned with the righteousness or wrongness of human behavior and which guides your conduct in relation to others. Ethics is the activity of examining the moral standards of a society, and asking how these standards apply to our lives and whether these standards are reasonable or unreasonable, that is, whether they are supported by good reasons or poor ones. Therefore, a person starts to do ethics, when he or she stakes the moral standards absorbed from family, friends and asks: who do these standards imply for the situations in which I find myself? Do these standards really make sense? What are the reasons for or against these standards? Why should I continue to believe in them? What can be said in their favor, and what can be said against them? Are their implications in this or that particular situation reasonable?

3.Distinguish the ethics of personal integrity from the ethics of social responsibility. Ethics has been defined as “moral philosophy: the study of the general nature of morals and of the specific moral choices to be made by a person.” Ethics and morals, however, are not the same thing, even though they are inextricably linked. A moral philosophy develops over time and as a result of encountering and resolving moral problems as they arise. Social responsibility is just as hard a term to define as ethical behavior. It is easier to describe than define. Social responsibility is multidimensional in that being responsible goes beyond just being respectful of others; it means experiencing, as well as appreciating, our interdependence and connectedness with others and our environment.

4.Distinguish ethics norms and values from other business-related norms and values. Ethics is the field of philosophy that studies systems, norms, or values that distinguish between what is good and bad or right and wrong. The field of business ethics focuses on examining conduct and policies and promoting appropriate conduct and policies within the context of commercial enterprise, both at the individual and the organizational level. Business ethics is a form of applied ethics where researchers and professionals use theories and principles to solve ethical problems related to business. Consequently, a central question of business ethics is “How do businesses determine what is appropriate or ethical conduct for any given commercial task?” Business ethics covers all levels of business activity, including the obligations and responsibilities of businesses to customers, employees, other businesses, national and multinational governments, and the environment.

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