Business ethics is a topic that is often on the forefront of media and journalism reports in the United States of America today. To someone that doesn’t have a background in business, or a general understanding of the business world, these reports can be cumbersome and hard to follow. One must first understand what business ethics actually are. Dictionary.com defines business ethics as the study and examination of moral and social responsibility in relation to business practices and decision-making in business (dictionary.com). Once one understands the meaning of business ethics, they often wonder what major companies do to stay ahead of the curve, and excel in the area of business ethics. Sadly, it seems as if the general media is only interested in companies with poor business ethics and practices. Media outfits are able to sell more papers, and gain more viewers, and honest companies such as PepsiCo never get the positive publicity that they deserve. Ethics and compliance are present in PepsiCo’s day to day operations. PepsiCo also has procedures in place to ensure ethical behavior for both their employees, and the company as a whole. Next, one must take a look at processes within the organization PepsiCo employs to comply with SEC regulations. Finally, the financial statements of PepsiCo will be analyzed with the intent of looking into the trend for different ratios and what it tells investors, and the public alike about the organization’s financial health. In a world that is filled with unethical companies that are lying to their investors, employees, and the public, it is encouraging to still have companies like PepsiCo that are both ethical and compliant.
PepsiCo goes to great lengths to attain economic success while still complying to the unwritten laws of business ethics. PepsiCo does this based on three main elements of influence: environmental, talent, and human sustainability. PepsiCo offers consumers a wide array of products from health conscious foods, to comfort foods, to athletic drinks. PepsiCo’s financial stability is greatly influenced by the decision to offer so many products. By doing so, PepsiCo gets to appeal to a variety of consumers, as opposed to just one type.
When PepsiCo speaks of environmental sustainability, they are talking about their efforts to “go green” or lessen their environmental footprint. PepsiCo is planning on taking the necessary steps toward reducing their electrical consumption by 20% and reducing fuel consumption by 25% by the year 2015. In 2007, PepsiCo saved nearly five billion liters of water, and nearly five-hundred million kilowatt hours of energy worldwide in 2007 when compared to their use in years past (PepsiCo, 2009). PepsiCo is looking out for the best interests of the environment, an ethical and admirable decision made by the company.
PepsiCo is also an equal opportunity employer and they are often praised for the diverse workforce that they develop. When PepsiCo speaks of talent, they are talking about their diverse workforce. PepsiCo also believes in equality, they show this by offering employment to individuals without worrying about gender, race, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. PepsiCo was named one of Business Ethics Magazine’s “100 best corporate citizens”. PepsiCo shows loyalty to their employees by trying to promote from within. They also participate in various surveys to prevent any issues, and to address any problem areas. The current CEO of PepsiCo is a woman by the name of Indra Nooyi; since she took over in 2006 she has promoted workplace diversity. PepsiCo’s workplace policies are available in thirty different languages to accommodate many ethnic groups. PepsiCo also does their best to try to spend as much as they could with minority owned businesses, while still looking out for the company’s best interests. (PepsiCo, 2009). PepsiCo is extremely ethical and compliant when looking at their hiring practices.