Essentials of Business Ethics Essay

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ESSENTIALS OF BUSINESS ETHICS ESSENTIALS OF BUSINESS ETHICS Business ethics is a form of applied ethics that examines just rules and principles within a commercial context; the various moral or ethical problems that can arise in a business setting; and special duties or obligations that apply to persons who are engaged in commerce. Generally speaking, business ethics is a normative discipline, whereby particular ethical standards are advocated and then applied. Business ethics can be examined from various perspectives, including the perspective of the employee, the commercial enterprise, and society as a whole. Very often, situations arise in which there is conflict between one and more of the parties, such that serving the interest of one party is a detriment to the other(s). For example, a particular outcome might be good for the employee, whereas, it would be bad for the company, society, or vice versa. Some ethicists see the principal role of ethics as the harmonization and reconciliation of conflicting interests. Ethical issues can arise when companies must comply with multiple and sometimes conflicting legal or cultural standards, as in the case of multinational companies that operate in countries with varying practices. The question arises, for example, ought a company obey the laws of its home country, or should it follow the less stringent laws of the developing country in which it does business? To illustrate, United States law forbids companies from paying bribes either domestically or overseas; however, in other parts of the world, bribery is a customary, accepted way of doing business. Similar problems can occur with regard to child labor, employee safety, work hours, wages, discrimination, and environmental protection laws. Traditionally, business ethics was considered to be a very controversial notion because even nowadays some people

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