Sample Milkshake Case
In the assigned case, George Stein is faced with an ethical dilemma. The difficulty and complexity of this dilemma is caused and compounded by a variety of factors. A discussion of these factors, as well as conclusions regarding what George ended up doing, serve as the foundation for this case analysis.
The first factor that is playing an influential role in George’s decision making is the fact that he is young. Researchers suggest that younger individuals tend to be more likely to make unethical decisions than older individuals (e.g., Longenecker, McKinney, & Moore, 1989; Ross & Robertson, 2003; Waters & Bird, 1987). Other researchers (e.g., Hunt & Jennings, 1997; Jennings, Hunt, & Munn, 1996) have explored ethical decision making specifically within the context of groups and teams. They collectively hypothesized and concluded that younger groups and teams make more unethical decisions than older groups and teams. They also found that student teams make more unethical decisions than professional manager teams. These findings are particularly relevant to this case since the night shift crew at Eastern Dairy can be viewed as a group or team of young, non-management individuals and George himself is a student. With his young age and the fact that he is new to this job, George also lacks experience. Research shows that a higher level of experience is more strongly associated with ethical choices than lower levels of experience (Glover, Bumpus, Sharp, & Munchus, 2002). All of these research findings suggest that George is more likely to make an unethical decision and remove the filters.
In addition to age, another individual difference variable that could influence George’s decision is gender. Gender is a significant factor in ethical decision making (Glover et al., 2002; Ross & Robertson, 2003) and females are more likely to respond ethically when faced with questionable business practices than males (Glover et al., 2002)....
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