Showing posts with the label ethical behavior

Whistleblowers Challenge Society to Function Better

Ethics is rooted in the greater good of society and the rules and norms that help ensure society doesn’t suffer at the hands of a few selfish individuals. Ethics can be applied to many different situations that range from dumping hazardous waste into rivers to using corporate influence to thwart regulations. Unethical behavior thrives in environments of fear and silence. Whistle blowers are those who are willing to break that cycle for something greater than themselves. As bad as it sounds, powerful entities and stakeholders sometimes profit off illegal and unethical behavior. Consider the case of Sharon Watkins and  her challenge of unethical behavior at Enron. After contacting CEO Kenneth Lay about accounting irregularities her findings were dismissed. Despite being an auditor, no one believed her until the entire company collapsed. There were previous signs of “crooked” activities in the company but people either ignored these signs up or covered them up quickly. In the cas

Standing for Business Ethics Relies on more than Simple Beliefs

Ethics may be more important today than it was in the past as international business brings new influences.   But despite its importance, it doesn’t mean standing up for ethics is likely in cases where unethical practices are regular occurrences. Research by Denise Baden (2014) helps define how positive and negative role models mixed with self-efficacy and descriptive norms help business members make ethical choices. The study encourages us to think about how our environment and self-beliefs impact our core decisions.  Standing against unethical behavior is never easy as one must sometimes move against their social, political, and business networks. Even good people are paralyzed with fear of reprisals and retaliation. To most it is better to be silent and see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil when it comes to corporate unethical practices.  Positive role models give an alternative to unethical behavior and provides a stronger context for another’s actions. Busines