Ethical Issues Organizations today are faced with many issues. A major challenge is dealing with and determining a code of ethics. Ethics involves the study of moral issues and choices (Kinicki, 2009). Many organizations today are faced with unethical behavior that occurs throughout the company. Ethical and unethical conduct is the product of a complex combination of influences (Kinicki, 2009). They stem from the individual who has their own personality and values out to the internal organizational influences such as: organizational culture, ethical codes, and organizational size and also the external organizational influences which are: political/legal, national culture, and environment. The underlying question is “Why are ethical issues a major concern for an organization?” Ethical issues can cause an organization legal problem. For example the legal issues that News Corp board member Lachian Murdoch is facing, as stated in the Wall Street Journal this week. He is charged with allegations that he was involved in an attempt by the company’s Australian unit to offer favorable coverage in return for political support in the late 1990s (Critchlow, 2011). Murdoch denies any wrong doing and stated he was never involved in lobbying. He stepped down as News Corp’s deputy chief operating officer in 2005, by remained at the company only as a nonexecutive director and a voting stakeholder (Critchlow, 2011). Research shows that illegal and unethical issues happen for several reasons.
For example (1) large firms are more likely to commit illegal acts than small firms; (2) although the probability of such wrongdoing increases when resources are scarce, it is greatest when resources are plentiful; (3) illegal behavior is prevalent in fairly stable environments but is more probable in dynamic environments; (4) membership in certain industries and a history of repeated wrongdoing are also associated with illegal acts; and, (5) the type of illegal activity chosen may vary
References: Critchlow, Andrew;Murdoch Son Denies Lobbying Lawmaker 2011
Kinicki, A & Kreither, R. (2009). Organizational Behavior:Key Concepts, Skills, Best Practices.(Ashford 4th ed.). McGraw-Hill
Sims, R.R. (1992). The Challenge of Ethical Behavior in Organizations.Journal of Business Ethics.