Ethical and Moral Issues in Business

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Ethical and Moral Issues in Business

Lorrie A. King

MGT/216

February 14, 2011

S. Fletcher

Abstract

Business ethics and morals can be significantly different or may overlap in many other ways. Ethics generally applies to the standards of an organizational or social system whereas morals define personal character of each individual involved in the business. Morals are typically unchanging throughout one’s life whereas ethics may change as society and government make changes. An organization generally communicates its business ethics through a code of conduct to the employees of the business whereas family, friends, mentors, and religious leaders ingrain individual morals. Ethical problems may arise when personal morals and business ethics conflict one another. It is then that an individual must make decisions that may place the business at risk or do what he or she believes is the right thing to do. This could mean saving lives and jeopardizing ones employment.

Ethical and Moral Issues

Ethical and moral issues can have significant or subtle difference and even sometimes appear the same. Morals play large part in forming ethics whether business, personal, or social. Individuals who avoid cheating, lying, stealing, and even murder are good morals that most of us share. These same moral principals are applied to our personal, social, and business ethics. However, differences can be found between ethical and moral issues. While it may be ethical to respect other beliefs and religions, it is not considered to be a moral issue. The medical and scientific communities may deem an act ethical while our individual moral standard considers the act to be immoral, as evidence shown in debates about stem cell research, abortion, and testing on animals.

Personal and Business Ethics

Personal ethics and business ethics differ in that personal relate to one’s own ethics while business ethics are defined for the workplace. Personal...
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