HERE HERE YOUR HERE HERE Ethical Dilemma at XYZ Chemical Company In business, Milton Friedman, a respected businesstheorist and researcher, strongly expresses that the most paramount responsibility of a business is to maximize profitability (Dunn 3). This belief is founded on an evolution of teachings stemming from Adam Smith who suggested that so long as society maintains benefits from corporate profitability increases, it is acceptable to put corporate needs first over stakeholders in society. With this in mind, it is common practice in today’s business world to seek opportunities to gain competitive advantages.
These efforts often include conducting competitor analyses, market research, and trying to maximize relationship development with important, revenue-building customers. In this case, the AM did not indicate where the pricing information came from, but simply advised supervision that there was no need for further aggressive bidding and negotiation tactics. Under the teleology framework of ethics, there is little justification for pursuing reprimand for the AM in this case. Teleology believes that behaviors to achieve a particular, desired consequence would be considered acceptable so long as it promotes a greater good without a great deal of consideration as to the means by which this outcome was achieved (Craig 39).
Regardless of whether the pricing information was received by the AM through surveillance or through workers at the customer organization that gave away this information, the AM was seeking what he believed was his responsibility to secure the profitability of the business to maintain competitive advantages. The RSM should absolutely take advantage of this new information and maintain her plausible deniability in this case. The AM, in this case, is not giving away company secrets or infringing on intellectual property of the customer taking bids, therefore there is no damage occurring to the customer’s business model.
Rather, the AM is simply seeking whatever information is necessary to maintain a negotiating edge. The RSM should adjust the bid accordingly based on the new information and recognize that the long-term impact on the organizational stakeholders is minimal; it simply represents an opportunity to seize market share from a competitor that supplies to their important customer which is a common business practice.
Morality and ethics are highly relative depending on cultural characteristics, organizational beliefs, and social influence demanding socially responsible business behavior. Those in business and society who prescribe to what is referred to as ethical relativism believe there is no framework to accurately measure right versus wrong that would be deemed acceptable to all stakeholders in an organization or society (Blackford 55). Therefore, society and business leaders should be tolerant of behaviors that conflict with individual moral and ethical codes. The RSM should weigh the genuine impact of having this pricing information, which in this case is quite minimal, and not pursue how this information was obtained.
The ASM’s superiors might weigh the information seeking investigation and determine that it provided the best utility for the organization, which could risk the ASM’s reputation if her leaders do not hold the same ethical values and believe in the relativism doctrine. Works Cited Blackford, Russell. Sam Harris’ The Moral Landscape. Journal of Evolution and Technology. Vol. 21, Iss. 2. 2010. Print. Craig, Edward. Encyclopedia of Philosophy. New York: Routledge. 1998. Print. Dunn, Craig P. The Social Responsibility of Business is to Increase its Profits.
2010. Web. Feb 7, 2013 .