Ethic refers as the standard of human behavior in moral aspect. Usually it is always explain in another way - do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Although of that, this method does not really fit the definition of business ethics. This is because commonly there are three different people who you have to deal with, who are customers, shareholders and clients. Making a decision while dealing a business can be extremely difficult and tricky. That is why business ethic has to depend on the situation and do not has an exact definition. You have to consider the situation and seek the fittest solution for it.
Business ethics can be defined as the ethics that based on the moral rules governing the business world. Explaining in another way, moral values have become the guidelines in making decision in a business.
Many firms have ruined their reputation because they have done something opposite to business ethic in the business. To most of the firm, the business is for making more and more money and that is the main and true objective of all of the businesses. It could also been called the basic sense for running a business. Actually making money do not considered as a mistake. It is the unethical behavior which should not been taken in the business.
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Because of a survey which has made in the past few years, we have witnesses a few of companies go bankrupt because of some mistakes in ethic aspect. The fate of having illegal action or unethical behaviors in a business has become good example for other firms and organization as a caution for being running a business out of law.
Below is the result of the survey for years. Tethics of their employers has been divided by employees into six different levels.
Important of Business Ethic
In general, business ethics is used to maintain integrity as it plays as important role in dealing with customers. By having business ethic, a firm can get good reputation and to maintain good client relationships. It is important in protecting business goodwill where it is direct and important effect in the success of a business. It reduces risks such as legal action, lawsuits and whistle blowing, and so on.
On the administrative and strategic side of business, it is also important to adopt ethical approach where takes account of various responsibilities to a business like to shareholders, employees and the community at large. Embracing these concepts of ethics as a part doing business is vital to ensure a business is run honestly, where it has the potential to grow and develop over time. That is the way of ensuring that relationships are developed across all aspects of the business where success and profit are conducive in the long term.
Ethics is no doubt an important for any entrepreneur where it widens the application throughout the organization. For what is ethical and the best is entirely different from everyone's view as it is important that to establish a set of ethic which represent the entire organization. Training by creating business policies and careful selection during the HR stage is important as the enforcement mechanism within the business is concerned in order to ensure unified, morally approach while doing business.
Approaches to Business Ethics
When business people discuss about business ethics, they usually mean avoiding breaking the criminal law in work-related activity, avoiding action which will result the law against the company and avoiding actions which stains the company's image. Businesses are very concerned about these three things where it involves loss of money and company reputation. A business could have these three concerns by assigning corporate attorneys and public relations experts to supervise employees on their daily activities. Perhaps reluctantly, businesses turn to specialists to guide employees where they can teach employees the basic understanding of morality to keep them out of trouble. It is not likely that specialists can teach anyone to be ethical. The job of teaching morality rests squarely on the shoulders of parents and one's early social environment. By the time specialists enter the picture, it is too late to change the moral behaviors of an adult. A morally responsible company must notice to the environmental impact, product safety, humane working conditions, scrupulous marketing, and truthful advertising. This is more than what business deal for.
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Some argue that there are almost the same between ethics and business in which ethics naturally appear from a profit-oriented business. It contains both weak and strong side of this approach. Weak side is often expressed in good ethics results in good business, which means businesses are profitable. But this weak side has problems where many moral business practices will have an economic advantage only in the long run and this provides little incentive for businesses where are designed to look for short-term profits. Some case like replacing older worker with that younger and efficient worker might cause some moral business which practices in long run not economically. Then, moral business practices which are good for business depend on what will produce profits. Sometime in a different market, same practices will not be work and anything which exists between morality and profit is both limited. The strong side of this approach is a reverse strategy and maintaining, in a competitive and free market, the motive will bring about a morally proper environment where customers demand safe products, or workers demand privacy. Businesses that do not have these demands will not survive. This view maintains the drive for profit where it creates morality. The strong side of this approach can be expressed as good business results in good ethics, where it converse of the above. But this strong view also has problems, where it believe that consumers or workers will demand the morally things where consumers may choose on less safe products if they know it is cheaper. We can say that not all moral practices can be suggested as either the weak or strong.
Another approach to business ethics is that moral obligations in business follows what the law wants and the common aspects from the west is that morality has been put in our legal system and the Orsupra-legal principles appeared to be optional since specialists talks about its acceptance and with that it is unreasonable to expect businesses to perform in disagreement where it optionally morally. In the society we live in, a majority-endorsed business have obligations which are contained in the law. Our diverse society has law itself where moral force is unified. Where social mission means a company operates actively recognizes the role of a business plays in the society where initiating innovatively will improve the life quality in the society either locally, nationally or internationally.
Business which follows the legal business ethics prompts business to the right way. But, there are two problems which restrict morality. First, by legal, business practices will be unscrupulous if the law lag. The second problem is that, at best, countries like Malaysia which is a developing country are morally conscientious as laws and regulatory agencies are less sophisticated.
Besides that, specialists suggested principles such as the following:
Harm principle: businesses should avoid causing unwarranted harm.
Fairness principle: business should be fair in all of their practices.
Human rights principle: businesses should respect human rights.
Autonomy principle: businesses should not infringe on the rationally reflective choices of people.
Veracity principle: businesses should not be deceptive in their practices.
So, we can say the corporate codes of ethics can be viewed cynically to foster good public relations and to reduce legal liability where reasonable model of understanding on articulate moral principles are introduced into the business practice in order to directly stipulates morality of certain action types without ensnaring problem of deriving particular actions of more abstract and harmful principles. But, there are limitations for the corporate code model where it will appear to be mere rules of prudence unless distinct moral character is established.
Business Ethics Practiced in Malaysia
Recent years, the business ethics which are practiced in Malaysia had moved in close examination and the reason is in fact the country's economy grew at a fast rate from 19871997.
Critics blame the country's goal as lack of business ethics by the year 2020 as the country strived to be considered as a developed country where corruption had been said to be rampant and the government is concern about the environment being sacrificed in favor for the economic growth and that is why Malaysian business owners tried to improved their image in order not to be criticized. So, that is why ethical country will appear to have easier chances to attract foreign investors.
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The Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs had just recently released a book titled "Code of Ethics for Malaysian Business" and the goal is to encourage ethical business practices in the country which is a positive step and not only the another way to improve business ethic practices is that companies wanting to be listed on the stock market needs to provide information about their company policies on corporate responsibilities and that will positively attracts lots of foreign investors to the country.
Conclusion and recommendation
The effectiveness of business ethnic refers to the role being played by customers. The word "business ethnic" usually means avoid letting the law being broken; keep away from action that may result in civil law suits against the company; and keep away from actions that are spoil for the company image. Ethics is a complex subject and its history is filled with diverse theories that are systematically refuted by rival theories. Not to mention businesses that do not have these demands will not survive. Business ethics contains moral obligations in business which follows what the law wants and the common aspects from the west is that morality has been put in our legal system. We can proceed with attempts to foster good public relations or to reduce legal liability, always be aware that the corporate code of ethics is an easy model for us to understanding how we should articulate moral principles and fully use in business practice. Plus, business ethics is a contested terrain not just because celebrated persons in the field of economics and business, but rather a questioned of relevance of ethics in business. Furthermore, Ethics, when remodeled as business ethics it suffers the fate of business expediency thus business ethicists prepare themselves for unambiguous quick and standard answers while ethics is not a matter of stable solutions but one of endless openness and difficulty and beyond the limits of normatively.At last, business ethnics are often viewed as a principle. Principle's to be independent and to stand up confidently without feeling nervous about it.
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