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Unformatted text preview: Instructor’s Manual, Chapter 5 1 Chapter 5 ETHICS AND CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY KEY STUDENT QUESTIONS Students see ethics from both an “insider” and an “outsider” perspective. As “insiders”, students are faced with ethical dilemmas at work, and they want to know how to resolve their ethical dilemmas. As “outsiders”, students see the unethical actions taken by business leaders today, and they want to know how to prevent such things from occurring. They also want to know what impact ethical/unethical actions can have on corporations. S 1. “What are the options you have when confronting ethical issues?” 1a. “What should you do when your manager/CEO is behaving unethically?” 2. “Why is ethical decision-making important in the business environment?” 2a. “What impact do ethical/non-ethical decisions have on businesses?” All of these questions are answered in the text, but you will want to reinforce the pragmatic, practical side to textbook answers in your lecture. Some suggested responses are given below. Question 1. When discussing the options people have when confronting ethical issues, let students know that the more they understand their own values, the clearer the appropriate course of action will be. A more simplistic (and perhaps more practical) approach to ethical decision making is to: 1) Evaluate the situation from your perspective; 2) Evaluate the situation from the perspective of as many other people involved in it as possible; and 3) Ask yourself if your mother (or the person you respect most in the world) would be happy with what you are planning to do. Question 1a. The reality of this dilemma is a power differential, and a possible lack of information. Again, one thing to stress is that the situation might look different from different perspectives, and before any action is taken, it is important to get complete information. So the first thing you have to do in this situation is to talk with the manager and find out why he/she is doing something that looks unethical to you. If you are still convinced that the manager is behaving unethically, it is up to you to make one of four choices: 1) Live with it; 2) Confront the manager directly; 3) Confront the manager’s supervisor; or 4) Leave the situation. One important thing to convey to students about this situation is why they should only go to the supervisor or the supervisor’s manager (in the case of the CEO, the Board of Directors) directly. It is critical to let students know that they can’t “end run” someone above them in the corporation. For questions 2a and 2b, ask students to answer their own questions. Most of them will be able to name organizations where a lapse in ethics led to a corporate downfall - consider, for instance, Tyco, Enron or Worldcom!...
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- Spring '09
- Ethics , McGraw-Hill Companies, Student Discussion Question