December 1, 2014
My intent in writing this paper is to describe how ethical principles can address organizational issues. The organization that I have chosen to explore is the Boeing Company specifically and the aerospace manufacturing industry as a whole, more generally. I will cover the role that external social pressures play in influencing the industry in both their compliance with government and professional ethics. I will also endeavor to highlight how the pressures brought to bear on the industry by the public and the government is relevant to their decisions both corporately and individually by their employees. Finally, I will share my thoughts on the relationship between legal and ethical issues with regard to the industry.
To begin then, let’s explore what role external social pressures have in influencing the Boeing Company and by extension, the aerospace industry’s organizational ethics. The level of trust that must be present by the public in the company that builds the airplane they fly in is best described in the words of the Boeing employee code of conduct “…must not engage in conduct or activity that may raise questions as to the company 's honesty, impartiality, or reputation or otherwise cause embarrassment to the company.” (Boeing, 2014) Boeing and the entire aerospace industry are hyper aware of their image and the perceptions of the flying public. When social pressure is brought to bear the entire industry takes notice and works to renew and enhance the public’s trust. For example, last year Boeing experienced a public relations nightmare when their new 787 Dreamliner aircraft experienced problems with Lithium Ion Batteries. An aircraft caught fire while waiting to be refueled and prepared for its next use. When news of the incident became known it was received with widespread fear and seeded mistrust of the airframe in the public, in the airline customer and
Cited: Boeing Company. (2014). Boeing.com. Retrieved Dec 1, 2014, from Boeing Ethic Home Page: http://www.boeing.com/boeing/companyoffices/aboutus/ethics/