A New Work Ethic: Typical Attitudes at the Workplace

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Case Stud 4.4 – A New Work Ethic?

Instructor: Professor Frederick J. Keil

Course: Business Ethics – BUS 309

Date: October 30, 2011

* Describe how typical the attitudes that Sheehy reports appear to be in work environments you have experienced. Work ethics can be describe as a set of values which involves the right attitude, correct behavior, respect for others and effective communication. Essentially, work ethics regulate what an employee would do in different situations at work. The habit of following good work ethics is inherent, which means it comes from within a person. It involves our morality and other values, apart from what others have taught us; beginning with our parents. What James Sheehy reports is a “whole generation of workers with a frightening new work ethic: contempt for customers, indifference to quality and service, unrealistic expectations about the world of work, and a get-away-with-what-you-can attitude” (case study, para. 3). I can say that when I was younger I had the easy jobs at first; life guarding at the neighborhood pool, babysitting the local kids, and the occasional dog walking, and I know that I didn’t appreciate the jobs that I had but in my defense, these where neighborhood jobs. Once I actually started working for companies, I learned the real meaning of work ethic. My parents instilled a great work ethic in my older brother and myself; they never let us quit something that we started mid-season, we always worked for a dollar, we always put our clothes away and made our beds every morning, and because of this I believe that’s a main reason that both my brother and myself give a 120% at our jobs. I work now at a Dance Studio as the office manager, where I am the owners ‘right-hand women’ and I take care of all three locations. Some of my employees are teenagers, working as dance assistants to earn some disposable income. We have had some problems in this area where some employees were clocking in 20-30 minutes...
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