Ethical Issues in Management

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Ethical Issues in Management
Performance evaluations are important to ensuring all employees are performing as expected, and if not the manager is providing proper feedback. Managers may encounter moral and ethical issues in the process of performance evaluations, and must do his or her best to evaluate fairly each employee. Ethically responsible management practices and social issues can be directly tied to performance evaluations, and managers may even come across legal issues surrounding an evaluation.

Employees usually receive two types of performance evaluations, an annual written evaluation and ongoing informal evaluations (Treviño & Nelson, 2007). Managers must engage in the performance evaluation process to evaluate each employee fairly. According to Axline (1996), “Managers and nonsupervisory employees alike cite concern about "politics and lack of fair treatment, honesty, and truthfulness" in connection with the performance review” (para 1). Treating any one employee with preferential treatment is unethical and all evaluations should be done with the same standards in mind. Managers also face the unpleasant task of delivering negative feedback to employees. As much as managers may dread this task, it must be done for the employee to make any progress and grow in his or her position. Withholding this information is unethical because it is uncomfortable to deliver, or for any other reason.

Moral issues managers face in the process of performance evaluations include the handling of possible negative evaluation of a friend, or encountering the mishandling of previous evaluations of an employee. Some managers do become friends with his or her employees, or an existing friend may become an employee. In the case that a manager must give an evaluation of an employee who is also a friend and the results are not positive, it may put the manager in the position of a moral dilemma. The manager is faces the decision to falsify the evaluation to benefit the...
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