Management Ethics: Moral Issues in Organizational Structures
Barnikel, Luise M.
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In a world in which profits have become more important than the people who generate the profits, an acute need for ethical guidance in organizational behavior has arisen. Today, this need is especially apparent because of the many changes stemming from globalization and technological innovations. Business practices have taken a turn in the wrong direction, as exemplified by many recent ethical scandals such as The Enron Corporation and WorldCom, Inc. These instances show that management often fails to provide moral leadership - a failure that needs to be addressed immediately. This paper offers discussion of some simple moral base rules, and shows how informed managers can apply them (at least theoretically) to their organizational structures. By giving an overview that spans from motivation over decision-making to loyalty, this paper argues that good management must connect with its employees in order to foster the next generation of professionals who understand that good and profitable business practices treat humans as an end, not as a means. These conclusions lead us to believe that if managers can lead by example and provide the right incentives for their personnel to follow, then globalization, capitalism and technology can all become useful tools for advancing both humans and the economy - and not simply a temptation to act unethically for one's own benefit.