Business Ethics


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Business Ethics

  1. 1. v See more essay samples onESSAYSHARK.COM Business Ethics Essay Sample DEVELOPING ETHICAL LEADERSHIP - Online Academic Assistance
  2. 2. v See more essay samples onESSAYSHARK.COMA common theme found in a number of articles, books, and other literature concerned withbusiness ethics is purpose. In their paper on ethical leadership, Freeman and Stewart (2006)suggest that a common purpose perceived by all stakeholders, in any enterprise orundertaking, is vital for its wellbeing and success. An attempt to understand the broad strokesof this perception is made here, with a particular interest in how it affects businesses andbusiness people. It is very important for the corporate individual to understand and develop apersonal sense of ethics in order to succeed (Freeman & Stewart 2).In his book Ethical Leadership: The Quest for Character, Civility and Community, Walter EFluker states that the concept of ethical leadership does not spring from nowhere, but isgrounded in historical tradition. Memorable corporate, community and political leaders –those who create lasting identities and respect – do it through taking on the wisdom, habitsand practices of those who went before them (Fluker 33). So those embarking on a career inbusiness would do well to study the practices of prosperous and fruitful corporate identitieswithin their fields of endeavor, and find out how the way they operated led to success. Theultimate concern of any undertaking must be viewed through the question of ethics: how anundertaking and the way it is directed affects those who direct and work on it, and those forwhose use it is intended (Fluker 34).The all-important aspect of upright and conscious character, and the notion of dealinghonestly and openly in all aspects of business, is what W.E. Fluker suggests leads to brilliantoutcomes, because the relationships of people in business is what generates successfulmaterial outcomes (Fluker 61).Ethical behavior is all to do with people, not with insentient things, objects, or items. Acontainer-full of merchandise has no feelings, no intent, and no purpose. The people who areinvolved in the sourcing, manufacture, and trading of the merchandise, however, need to dealwith each other in an ethical way to ensure that the exchanges that take place between itscreation and subsequent use by the consumer are all above-board and principled, and so,successful (Freeman & Stewart 5).Because of the human aspect of ethics and its links to business success, corporate leadersmust be careful about their behaviors, and how they address problems. They must steerundertakings and projects towards their planned conclusions in a principled and disciplinedway.Most importantly, they must make sure they are persuasive about the common purpose
  3. 3. v See more essay samples onESSAYSHARK.COMall stakeholders have in any project (Freeman & Stewart 11).It is problematic, writes Terry Price (2009), in his book on leadership ethics, when projectmanagers, chief executive officers (CEOs) or directors of companies identify themselves withgreat historical leaders, political celebrities, or legendary figures (Price 3). Being committedto the fruitfulness of a project equates to the success of the group of people concerned with itsoutcome. So, modern day leaders must not distance themselves from the welfare of thoseupon whom they depend for the success of their project. Because if the human power behinda project fails, the whole undertaking can easily collapse (Price 4).The successful completion of any project, plan, or concern depends directly on the peoplesteering it towards its end (Freeman & Stewart 10). The leaders of these people mustunderstand the importance of honesty, directness, trustworthiness, and decency if they are tochalk up any sort of useful result.It can sometimes be difficult to determine whether an action or decision is right or wrong,because modern thought is based on relativism (Price 16) – that is, how bad or goodsomething is compared with the usefulness of its outcome. In spite of this, it is possible formanagers, CEOs, and directors to come up with their own specific code of ethics thatbalances well with the expectations of all the people with whom they deal. These might bepeers, employees, suppliers, or clients, with whom they must interact towards completion of aspecific project.
  4. 4. v See more essay samples onESSAYSHARK.COMReferencesFluker, W.E. Ethical Leadership: The Quest for Character, Civility and Community Fortress Press 2009Freeman, R.E., and Stewart, L. Developing Ethical Leadership Bridge Papers 2006Price, Terry L. Leadership Ethics: An IntroductionCambridge University Press 2008