Unethical Business Research Conduct Essay Example

Pages: 4 (792 words) / Published: Jan 22nd, 2013
Ethics and the behaviors associated with them have the highest significance for different reasons within

a business organization. Companies must ensure they follow all levels of ethical behavior when any activity is

performed at their premises; especially activities related to business research. Business research is the

systematic inquisition that provides information to direct managerial decisions (Cooper & Schindler, 2011). Its

purpose is to allow companies access to valuable information on company policies, customer service and

consumer buying habits. Business owners can use this information to discover which products and services are

important to the public, worker morale and behaviors, as well as what they can do to set themselves apart from

the competition. However, wrong methods and/or unethical research conduct can obscure results and lead to the

damage of a companies’ process, financial statue and image.

An example of unethical business research can be found in the 2004 discrimination lawsuit against

the restaurant Cracker Barrel. A number of bad research methods contributed to the courts’ order to convict and

discipline the retailer for a number of consumer accusations. The leading cause of the court’s decision was the

companies’ bad research and investigations into the basic problems and the flawed information that was turned

into the Department of Justice following said investigation.

Cracker Barrel Restaurant and Old Country Store, a nationwide retail chain, underwent random testing

of its facilities and stores to monitor the possibility of racial bias in customer service. This research and

observation was not only to screen for the possibility of racism, but to expand culture and diversity training to

employees as part of a settlement with the Department of Justice on May 3, 2004. This agreement was made

after a number of African Americans (and other minority groups) customers

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