Discussion Question 2

Topics: Enron, Ethics, Business ethics Pages: 1 (439 words) Published: October 31, 2014

Review the Enron case information presented in the textbook. If you were a high-level leader in this corporation, how might applying your personal ethics have changed the outcome? Greed, power and personal satisfaction are all characteristics that motivate people to do things that might not always be in the best interest of others. In the case of Lay and Skilling, along with dozens of other executives, this is exactly what happened. There was no acceptance of blame, only ignorance and death. Enron was a highly respected company in many ways. As one of the fastest growing, wealthiest companies in the 90’s, Kenneth Lay’s praises were sung by presidential candidates, the Fortune 500 and widely renowned business magazines across the country CITATION Joh123 \l 1033 (Johnson, 2012). How could a company who had such highly profiled respect and revenue be at the root of such a huge scandal? Nothing great comes without a price. Although there are number of factors that influence the ethical behaviors of a person, none of these factors were powerful enough to change the unethical behaviors of these people CITATION Cer11 \l 1033 (Cernusca, 2011). If I were a high-level leader in this corporation, my personal ethics would not allow me to become ignorant to the situation that was occurring. Although millions of dollars were being distributed to these executives to essentially keep them quiet, there needed to be boundaries and a sense of empathy for all of the losses that others were suffering at the time. I would have alerted the proper authorities, made sure that all stakeholders were informed of the company’s debts and most importantly I would have sat all of the executives down to enforce the corporation’s code of ethics. If Lay was able to demote executives as quickly as he did for simply disagreeing with him, he had to have a reason and an ethical backing to support his decisions. Had Enron devised, distributed, promoted and enforced a code of ethics that...

References: BIBLIOGRAPHY l 1033 Cernusca, L. (2011). Ethics in Accounting: The consequences of the Enron scandal. Agricultural Management, 35-42.
Johnson, C. E. (2012). Meeting the ethical challenges of leadership. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.
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