What kind of organization would you like to work for? What would be the best? What would be the most realistic? Think about and discuss its structure, physical environment, lines of communication, treatment of employees, recruitment and promotion practices, policies towards the community and so on. Consider also what you lose because of some of these benefits (for example if the company contributes in the community or offers more benefits for employees there might be less money for raises.) Discuss trade-offs. Link the costs and benefits (utilitarianism) to the value of what the firm is doing (universalism). Question 2. Read the Decision Point: Who is to Say What is Right and Wrong?
Discuss the following questions related to this scenario:
Would you accept this explanation and be content with your failing grade? If not, how would you defend your own, opposing view? Are there any relevant facts on which you would rely on to support your claim?
What values are involved in this dispute?
What alternatives are available to you?
Besides you and your teacher, are there any other people who are or should be involved in this situation, any other stakeholders?
What reasons would you offer to the dean in an appeal to have the grade changed?
What consequences would this professors practice have on education?
If reasoning and logical persuasion do not work, how else could this dispute be resolved?
Other than reasoning and logical persuasion, what is the major alternative for resolving conflicts? Of course, the most common alternatives have been force and violence. Question 3. Read “Rethinking the Social Responsibility of Business: A Reason to Debate” featuring Milton Friedman, Whole Foods John Mackey, and Cypress Semicondutors T. J. Rodgers. Discuss the concept that corporations add far more to society by maximizing long-term shareholder value than they do by donating time and money to charity. How important is this concept to business, society, and to you? Which position do you believe is more accurateRodgers or Mackey? Question 4. Read Decision Point: Inquiring Employers Want to Know. The following information is sometimes requested on standard employment applications, though job candidates might consider some of it to be private or personal. Which of the following items about an employee might an employer have a legitimate claim to know, and why? Question 5. Are some products too dangerous to be marketed in any circumstance? What regulations, if any, would you place on marketing cigarettes? Handguns? Prescription drugs?
As a starting point, refer to The American Marketing Associations Statement of Ethics, found at www.marketingpower.com/AboutAMA/Pages/Statement%20of%20Ethics.aspx which provides guidelines for marketing products. This code of ethics can be used to locate other codes and regulations that may address this issue. Question 6. Do you believe that business has any direct ethical duties to living beings other than humans? Do animals, plants, or ecosystems have rights? What criteria have you used in answering such questions? What is your own standard for determining what objects count, from a moral point of view?
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