Ethical Decision-Making

Topics: Business ethics, Decision making, Ethics Pages: 2 (545 words) Published: September 14, 2005
Decision-making skills in a business environment are critical for continued company growth and progress. Personal or business ethics can have a substantial impact on how decisions are made. In order for decisions to be ethically defensible it must contain specific elements. The basic elements in ethical decisions are ground rules. Ground rules can be composed of informal ethical believes of business ethics. The determining factor of an ethical decision will be based on which ground rule is used.

An ethically defensible decision includes a number of important elements. Most crucial are the ground rules that underlie such a decision. These can include informal ground rules like religious faith, family values, personal experiences, and the personality of the individual. However, a business impacting decision needs to be based on ground rules developed by the organization. Organizational ground rules can include employee treatment, discrimination awareness, company value and corporate goals. In the business environment, ethically defensible decision needs to be based on business ground rule, which may require a critical thinker to disallow emotion in making the decision. The organization of a companies ground rules can be based on many factors. The primary factor in creating organizational ground rules would be the companies' mission statement or long-term goals. The importance of establishing ground rules directly impacts ethical decision-making. If there are no ground rules to guide an ethical decision, then it may be based on personal or informal ground rules. Since formal ground rules have become so important, many organizations inform employees of ethical guidelines when hired. With so many decisions being based of business ethics or established company ground rules, there can be situations where ethics can be the driving force of the decision. The ethical implications of these decisions can change informal ground rules or personal ethics. If the employee...
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