Conscience or the Competitive Edge Essay

578 WordsSep 18, 20083 Pages
The article “Conscience or the Competitive Edge” raises issues in the business world and how ethics influence many people’s decisions. An example would be the scenario of Olivia Jones, a highly respected business negotiator, who was known for her bargaining power which has helped keep the products for the company at a relatively low cost. In this article, Olivia Jones encountered an experience which will forever change the way she conducted herself at her career. She decided that she wanted to visit one of the factories in the city of Bombay, India where the products she was purchasing were being produced. There she witnessed the poor working conditions of the factory workers as they were cramped in a room that was only five feet high and no more than 20ft by 40ft. She also learned that these men worked 12 hour rotations for 6 months out of the year, spending the other 6 months back in the countryside with there family where they would spend the money the earned to farm the land. Startled by what she witnessed she was faced with the decision to either act on her conscience or to do nothing at all when making future business decisions. She seems obligated to perform some action which would benefit the conditions in the factories where her products are produced. But should she do anything at all? Will her decision to act on her social conscience influence her career? Ethics play a major role in most business making decisions but in some cases they cannot in order to safeguard someone’s career. This is the case for Olivia Jones as her conscience is overcoming her competitive edge. She is assuming that the factory workers are upset with their job and the conditions they work in, but she does not concretely know this for a fact. It could very well be that the factory workers are just happy to be making any money at all. If she chooses to go with her

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