Ethics & Environment Essay

630 WordsMar 9, 20123 Pages
Q: Why was GE's written policy on antitrust ineffective? In his book White Collar Crime, Edwin Sutherland hypothesized that "criminal behavior [in business] is learned in association with those who define such behavior favorably and in isolation from those who define it unfavorably. . . . As a part of the process of learning practical business, a young man with idealism and thoughtfulness for others is inducted into white collar crime" (pp. 234 and 240). To what extent was this hypothesis verified in the case of GE? What implications, if any, does this have for moral responsibility within GE? Within any business? Written policies may be considered a necessary tool in an organization as a method of effectively communicating and passing on pertinent knowledge and information generally based on an organization's values and practices to its employees; these carefully developed policies form a framework of expectations relative to employee relations and are created to express a company’s commitment to nondiscriminatory employment practices. However, the policies should be updated and applied to retain value or may risk holding little influence or power amongst workers due to conflicts of advice, ethical behavior of seasoned employees/management, and overall usefulness. Also, written records (when properly maintained) are likely to be more effective and consistent in application when clearly communicated in writing. As a manager, I consider written communication of policy, procedure, job description, performance, and behavior to be great “paper trails” and useful in situations which require documentation to ensure and justify that all employees are on the correct path; however, the same written policies may have the opposite effect if not serving its particular purpose or subjected to misinterpretation amongst employees and employers (possibly creating a
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