Managers go through making decisions
every day, and many have an ethical dimension. In today’s environment lots
of company should follow law and regulation set for the ethical reasons but it’s
said than done, ethical behavior is becoming very important in today’s world
and vital for companies. Ethical decision-making is a cognitive process
where people consider ethical rules, principles or guidelines when making
decisions. Ethics is a system of values and principles of right or
proper conduct. For example, most ethical systems find lying to be a violation
of an ethical rule of being truthful. However, breaking the law can be very
tempting for many people and firms if they know it will be the extra profit
company always want even though company will need to break social rules or bad
environmental behavior. (Yucel, et al, 2009)
Gaski has argued that managers should follow and focus on obeying the “law”.
Gaskin’s argument shows that manager must obey the law for the benefit of the
company. In addition, managers may face situations where the law, the self-interest
and of course ethics beliefs are inconsistent. Consistency of an ethical
principle with the law or self-interest does not mean that it is limited only
to what the law or self-interest is the same ethical consideration must be
there for the benefit of the others.
Global companies must come
to grip with the legal and ethical consideration in which they operate their
business. They must need to establish an environment that promotes ethical
behavior. Therefore, global organizations need to develop and enforce their own
codes of ethics specifically to resolve the issues related to a multicultural
and multinational business environment (Mahdavi, 2004).
Some activities and beliefs may be legal, but it does not mean they have to be.
On the same way organization also pay attention for ethical considerations
which are not legal. A great example of legal practice but is not at all
considered ethical is Nike, Nike who already making millions in profits each
years were underpaying workers in Asia. The guardian stated “Nike lists abuses
at Asian factories” a report was admitted that Nike abused morally, physically
and financial their employees in Asia. The workers were paid just $2.2 an hour (the
minimum of wages), although, the company was meeting the legal requirement in
that country it was not ethical at all, and customers started to protest and
stopped buying Nike until it was sorted. This shows that even if the company is
not doing anything illegal if it’s not ethical they will be caught and
potentially lose customers and lose money and doesn’t always mean they will
make a profit out of it. (Teather, 2005)
On the other hand, there are
some behaviours which are illegal, but widely perceived as ethical. One example
is taking office supplies from the company supply cabinet for personal use.
Legally, this is considered theft, but many people see no moral or ethical
problem and do it anyway. Ethics can be defined in different ways depending on
the culture, e.g. in USA to be ethical means to respect the laws. But what is
legal is not necessarily ethical, and one can interpret a law according to
his/her objective. The strategy “Fight against action” can be also
considered as an ethical one in regards to the company’s employees and
shareholders (Hove, 2005).