Milton Friedman's Views on Business and Ethical Consideration

Topics: Ethics, Business ethics, Morality Pages: 3 (1019 words) Published: April 15, 2013
Question 1: In the 1960s, Milton Friedman said that the purpose of business was to increase shareholder return and that issues of ethics were not the concern of any business – the law should be complied with, morality should be strived for, but ethical consideration had no place in the business environment.

Ø Consider the multiple publics (employees, suppliers, consumers, communities, and shareholders for example) that are involved in all business transactions.

Ø Explain why ethical consideration IS appropriate and required when conducting business in the 21rst century.

Ø Give some specific examples of ethical issues that confront businesses and how these might be addressed.

Answer 1: While doing some research about Friedman’s statements and work, I have found many answers and if we look at business the way of making money by any means we would face many consequential actions. When I mentioned “making money by any means” I was referring to unethical decisions and actions that can be conducted by companies only to achieve their goals, to make more profit. This would automatically lead to the mistreatment of employees which would affect us directly, because the bottom line is that the majority of us work for someone and we are depended on someone else.

It is a fact; living today it is all about business. If we take a look at things that are surrounding us we can see that for most of the people, business is the only purpose of the life. The only important thing to continue our life that we are not paying for is oxygen, in normal circumstances. We are paying for water, food, health care, the basic things that we need for our everyday life, and people are managing to get billions of dollars out of these essential products. Now, think about how world would be if ethics in business would not exist! We would have a chaotic business situation going on all over the world, and people not trusting to each other. This would make our life very difficult because...
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