MANAGEMENT ETHICS 7
Businessowners and employees often face challenging ethical dilemmas such asthe dilemma kelvin and Antonio have to deal with in the case. It isdifficult for either of them, as an individual to decide whether toreport illegal and unethical practices that their colleagues andseniors are instigating right under their noses. The businessenvironment is constantly under intense pressure and does not allowmuch time to the individual for reflection. The high stakes thatappear severe so promising are tempting to an individual and maycause one to compromise their ideals. Dealing with moral issues oftenis very perplexing. Having laid-out facts is just half the task.Facts alone tell an individual what “is” as opposed to what needsto be. It is important to appeal to values to resolve an ethicalissue. The facts in this case are clear. The company needs a systemupdate. There is a shortage in funds. If the insurers find the damageto be high-level damage as requested of Kevin, the settlements willbe large which will allow the Empressa to achieve the system upgradeit so wanted and needed (Daft, 132, 2010).
Autilitarian approach to making a decision is the consequence based,compares the possible available choices for taking any action, andcompares the results of doing one versus the results of doinganother. Antonio faces the challenge of whether he would do his owndirty work, completely exonerating Kevin from the fall back, whichmight come to the company if the insurers discover the fraud. Itwould be a viable option for all stakeholders except for himself. Hewould leave his position in the firm, as he would take the fall forcharges of insurance fraud. The benefits here most certainly do notoutweigh the evils.
Anotheroption would be for Antonio to choose to take the matter to therelevant authority himself, consequently digging his own corporategrave. If anybody becomes a whistle-blower, the rest of thestakeholders are likely to shun and exclude him, and he might end uplosing his job in the company. He will however retain his moral andethical beliefs and will have conducted business in the right mannerdisassociating himself with the insurance fraud that would happen.Using the utilitarian decision making approach, Antonio may decide totake up his ethical responsibility and report the financial crime andface the consequences will arise from his actions. If he loses hisjob, he will have no trouble explaining that he left the job for hisdecision to maintain proper ethical practice. Even better, he couldremove the time he worked there from his curriculum vitae to avoidvictimization as a whistle blower.
Theindividualism approach considers the most important factor indecision making to be individualism. Essentially, the decision makermakes a decision based guided by selfish inclinations as the biggestmotivation. According to individualism approach, acts are consideredas moral in they are in the individual’s best interests in thelong-term, ultimately leading to the greater good (Dolgoff, 45-53,2009).
Usingthe individualism approach, Antonio would have decided to do what isbest from which may be to remain quiet about the whole issue. Hewould allow cheating of insurance claims to go on under his watch butignore it. Consequently, if the insurance claims came to theorganization and caused any form of fallback, he will deny knowledgeof any such activity in the cruise. If Kevin were to implicate him bysaying, he had informed him, it would merely be his word againstKevin’s word. However, the most viable approach using individualismapproach would be to report the case of attempted fraud and exoneratehim from the crime repercussions in the end. Antonio by reporting thecrime may lose his job in the short term, which may lead to anargument that the decision is not individualistic. However, the evilsthat would come to him after filling the case would be much higher.
IfI were in Antonio’s shoes, I would have chosen the same decision.From both a utilitarian point of view and an individualisticapproach, the best logic is to distance myself from the crimes thatare going on and from losing my job. If I am implicated in the crime,I could go to prison and miss countless of other opportunities sinceI could be in jail. The making of this decision is at apost-conventional level. It means that I do not base my choice ofright and wrong based on the authorities at the cruise. I do not makea decision on the foundations of that my peers think nor the normlevel in the society, as in the conventional level of moraldevelopment (Marcic, 678, 2005).
Iarrive at this decision on a post-conventional level of moraldevelopment. At the point where I am working at this cruise in acomfortable job, I am an adult who needs to make adult decisionsbased on the right moral conventions and base the decision on theright reasons. At this level, I do not have to found my answers onloyalties to the firm, which could serve to jeopardize my entirecareer and future. I am not bound to living by societal set standards(Schermerhorn, 60, 2010).
Iam entirely comfortable with my decision and pleased with my answer.It is more important from a mature individual to make decisions on auniversal perspective rather than merely a societal perspective.Decisions such as ethical decisions in the workplace could eithermake or build an individual’s life. It is a more mature andprofessional thing to do, to make decisions on a universal point ofview as opposed to a smaller mindset. The moral principles that thepost-conventional mentality lives by is to appeal any reasonableparty as they take the interests of every party into account (Daft,132, 2010). The question of right or wrong, appeals to what promotesor fails to promote universal ideals of human rights, justice, andhuman welfare.
IfAntonio and kelvin reported the fraud to authorities, the mostprobable result is that they could lose their jobs. In the search fornew jobs, they might face the question of why they left, and it mightbe career suicide for them to tell their new employer that they leftbecause they are whistleblowers. It could lead to the new employershaving the fear that they could do something to jeopardize thefunctioning of their companies and perhaps report the company and anyissues it may have to the authority. Justifiably it is difficult foranybody to trust individuals who have the brand ‘whistleblower."
Lookingat this from a different perspective, Kevin and Antonio function onan individual moral and ethical foundation. The result of this wasthat they were unable to look away when they knew there were someillegal activities in the cruise, even though this would, eventually,cost them their jobs.It shows that they are individuals of properethical conduct and in incase would avoid looking for employment inorganizations with even the least amount of suspicion in illegalactivities. Therefore, it is unlikely that they will lose employmentopportunities on regard of walking away from crimes. Employers wantto seem to their employees and to society as good and noble peoplewho do not engage in illegal activities. Turning them away would drawsuspicion towards the organization from unions and such otherlobbyists. Therefore, Kevin and Antonio should hold their head highand include the work in their curriculum vitae.
Theywould not be justified to remove their experience from the curriculumvitae because they have nothing to hide from the potential employers.They did not engage in any ethical crime and should not be afraid toshare their work experience with the new and potential employersmerely because there were members of the cruise committing crimes,crimes that they detached themselves from and walked away from theirjobs.
Inthe complex global business climate, making an ethical decision israrely easy. One approach will sometimes be more appropriate that theother. Taking time to consider possibilities allows the decisionmaker to make the best and most plausible decision. Rarely will onearrive at a decision, which is best for all stakeholders. Rather, onemust make the decision that has the least conflict, of course,rallying this against the different approaches to decision making.
Daft,R. L. (2010). Management.Mason, Ohio: South-Western Cengage Learning.Bottomof Form
Daft,R. L., & Marcic, D. (2005). Understandingmanagement.Cengage Learning.
Dolgoff,R., Loewenberg, F. M., & Harrington, D. (2009). Ethicaldecisions for social work practice.Belmont, CA: Thomson Brooks/Cole.
Schermerhorn,J. R. (2010). Management.Hoboken, N.J: Wiley.