Culture of Ethical Business Behavior Within the Organization (Reaction Paper Sample)
Think of a company that you have worked for or that you know about that has not successfully implemented a culture of ethical business behavior. What would you suggest to that company in order for the leaders to improve their culture?
Response should reflect in- depth consideration and personalization of the theories, concepts, and/or strategies presented. Viewpoints and interpretations are insightful. Response demonstrates synthesis of ideas presented.
Course Learning Outcomes for Unit II
Upon completion of this unit, students should be able to:
1. Differentiate among the concepts of social responsibility, integrity, and business ethics.
2. Analyze the influence of corporate culture, including leadership, power, and motivation, on business ethics in the workplace.
3. Analyze the role that culture plays in global business ethics.
Thinking about the famous cartoon series Wile E. Coyote and The Road Runner by Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies reinforces another set of ethical situations. Wile E. Coyote (referred to as Coyote) and the Road Runner (fast-running bird) were involved in a series of situations in which Coyote attempts to capture and eat the Road Runner. Revolving around the setting of the American southwest desert area, the only audio used is a periodic “beep-beep” uttered by the Road Runner. Instead of using conventional methods, Coyote used complex contraptions and innovative methods that always seemed to backfire, resulting with Coyote sustaining an injury (see suggested reading sample of Road Runner cartoons).
Throughout the series, the Road Runner is never harmed, and the Coyote is more humiliated than harmed through his failures. Although the show presents this scene in a comical venue, the idea of blowing up, running over, smashing, or attempting to kill brings forth unethical connotations. Additionally, the intended viewers of these cartoons are children, which brings forth questions of the cartoons' impact on young children with respect to advocating violence. This incident relates to the controversial actt of avertising to children, which continues to plague companies and the marketing field in general.
“It is estimated that advertisers spend more than $12 billion per year to reach the youth market” (American Psychological Foundation, 2015, para. 3) through advertising. Task forces continuously review the effect that these advertisements have on children, which raises the question of how much impact a cartoon series like Road Runner has on children. The literature clearly states that children's cognitive development for understanding what they view on television is significantly less than that of adults. The question arises as to whether or not children can understand the actions of the Coyote to destroy the Road Runner as fictional, meaning that they should not replicate these actions in the real world. This show also brings forth the question of whether there is real harm to the child and those around him or her. One might draw analogies to the increased amount of school shootings that our nation is enduring.
Another question related to the antics of the Coyote and the Road Runner is whether these are, in a broader sense, an integral part of their culture. Is it a natural tendency of the Coyote to attack birds, specifically a road runner species? This brings into focus the need for a discussion around the effect that an individual culture has within an organization. We all can probably agree that different cultures have different habits, mannerisms, and practices that will lead to different decisions and behaviors on a personal level, as well as within the business setting. The broad question here is about how an organization works with these differences in cultures but still maintains good business ethics within the organization.
Once an organization has evolved to this point, it needs to establish what it believes by clarifying what sound and ethical practices look like. Educating, training, and motivating employees to follow these ethical guidelines is a crucial next step. Continuously communicating, as well as providing incentives to motivate employees, will solidify the process. The underlying purpose of these steps is to create a culture within the organization where it expects and practices ethical behavior habitually. In most circles, an organization should create a culture of ethical behavior. Ethical behavior is one of the most complex processes within an organization, as well as one of the most integral in maintaining an ethical business environment.
Culture of Ethical Business Behavior Within the Organization
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