One of the serious problems that businesses face these days is business ethics problems. When put simply, these problems are conflicts between the interest of a business and that of the employees/customer or the society in general.
No matter how hard the management of a business tries to set and maintain high standards of professional ethics, these conflicts do surface at some point of time or the other. One does not have to dig deep to find the reasons for these conflicts either, as they are inherent in the very nature of business.
Any person joining a job wishes to be paid as highly as possible. In contrast, cost minimization is always high on the priority list of the employer(s). An employee wishes to have the minimum work hours whereas the management is always striving to reach the peak of productivity.
When it comes to the customers, they want to have the best possible products on the least possible prices. At the same time, the manufacturer tries to produce an item at the lowest possible cost and put as high a price as possible.
The society expects the corporate world to bear their social responsibilities – being environment conscious, making investments in sports and education, maintaining clean surroundings, etc. For a business entity all these will mean additional expenditure.
The million dollar question, in the face of all these demands, is how do you overcome this situation, if at all these can be overcome?
The answer lies in ‘balance’. No one can argue with the fact that businesses are established to maximize returns for its owner(s) and, in some cases, shareholders. Still, the business establishments can achieve this goal while behaving ethically – helping its employees, giving to the customers’ products worth their money and serving the community in general.
By following ethical norms and investing in social sectors, the business will earn the respect and confidence of the customer. This way the business may not make fast bucks or what is termed ‘go for kill’ but the results will start to show with time. In long term, it will be a boon for the brand and will enable the business to get to high profitability rates.
Similarly, if a business takes care of its employees, it will have happier and more productive workers. This, in turn, will make very positive effect on the productivity of the company.
If a business takes care to reduce waste, encourage recycling and preserving energy, it will not only aid the environment but will also help itself. Using these means, a considerable amount can be saved which can then be put to better use.
There is no denying that even a responsible business outfit will face business ethics problems. However, they can be countered using business ethics acumen and insight.