Ethical Obligations

Business

Quiz 3 :

Organizational Ethics and Corporate Governance

Quiz 3 :

Organizational Ethics and Corporate Governance

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How does employee perceptions of commitment, integrity, and transparency in the workplace contribute toward creating an ethical corporate culture?
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Ethics in the workplace:
The study of what is right and what is wrong is termed as ethics. The form of applied ethics on ethical problems or principles of business is called Business Ethics. Ethical policies are implemented in a workplace so that the organization can function on ethical values and principles.
The employee's perception of integrity, transparency and commitment helps in creating an ethical culture for the organization.
The employee's perception or opinion regarding the transparency, integrity and commitment in the work place is of great importance in determining the ethical culture of any organization.
A positive perception of employee will help the organization in creating ethical culture in the following ways:
1. It reduces the chances of fraud or cheating within the organization.
2. When employee sees its company as transparent entity he will become more responsible for his work.
3. The perception of current employees also affects the perception of new employees. If the perception of existing employees will be positive regarding company's policy so will be the perception of new employees.
4. The interests of the company will be put before personal interest as the perception about integrity and transparency of employees is positive.
All the aforementioned points show that the company can create an ethical culture for itself if the employees have a perception of transparency and integrity.

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Rite Aid Inventory Surplus Fraud img img Questions 1.What steps must you take to be eligible to blow the whistle to the SEC under the Dodd-Frank Financial Reform Act? 2.Would you inform the external auditors about the fraud? Explain. 3.Assume you met all the requirements to blow the whistle under Dodd-Frank. Would you do so? Why or why not?
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1.
The DF act was enacted for stating the weaknesses underlying the industry that deals with financial services which results in big firms such as BS and LB to collapse and become bankrupted. A whistle blower program is being developed by SEC underlying the DF act. According to this program if original information is being provided by informant voluntarily which lead to enforcement action by SEC. the informant is being awarded by SEC with 10 to 30% of the amount recovered by it. In order to qualify for the whistle blowing program, the informant is required to make sure that original information must be provided by him pertaining to the violation of the laws that were laid down by federal securities which leads to thriving enforcement action resulting in the monetary sanctions of more than one million dollars. The information provided must rely on the independent analysis or knowledge. The information provided by the informant should not exist already with the SEC.
2.
In this case, the financial compilation and statement are also reviewed by the external auditor. Under compilation the auditors are required to take a look at financial statement to make sure they are free of obvious misstatement and errors. In review auditors are generally required to tie and tick numbers underlying the general ledgers. Dealing with the fraud underlying accounting is the main focus of various auditing and accounting agencies such as ACCA, IASB. External auditor must be informed about the fraud because such auditor seeks audit confirmation pertaining to certain transaction and denying such confirmation or providing false acceptance might attract scrutiny from the accounting and auditing agencies. If the fraud is being caught by such agencies then it might attract legal trials and ruin the image of the company in the market and in front of the stakeholders.
3.
In this case, In order to qualify for the whistle blowing program underlying the Dodd frank act, the informant is required to make sure that original information must be provided by him pertaining to the violation of the laws that were laid down by federal securities which leads to thriving enforcement action resulting in the monetary sanctions of more than one million dollars. As suggested if all the requirements are met then the information about the alleged transaction or fraud must be provided to the SEC so that the interest of the stakeholders can be safeguarded against such fraud and the faith of the public and investor can be kept intact. Thus it can be concluded that soon the information is provided to the concerned authority, better it will be for the financial health of the company and people associated with it.

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The Parable of the Sadhu Questions 1.Throughout The Parable of the Sadhu, Bowen McCoy refers to the breakdown between the individual and corporate ethic. Explain what he meant by that and how, if we view the hikers on the trek up the mountain in Nepal as an organization, the ethical person-organization fit applied to the decisions made on the climb. 2.Using the various ethical discussions in the first three chapters as your guide, evaluate the actions of McCoy, Stephen, and the rest of the group from an ethical perspective. 3.What role did leadership and culture play in this case? 4.What is the moral of the story of the sadhu from your perspective?
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1.
In this case, the frame for corporate ethical is supported by the management of the company by undertaking continuous action of employees, formation of clear attitudes that are ethical in nature and training. It can be identified M was followed by the individual that act as representative of varied nations viz. Japanese, S country, NZ, their Sherpa sirdar and local porters. None of the people mentioned above have ever met in person from one another. They assume the risk, stress and danger; however it comes out to be the lifetime experience for everyone. Further they also act as representative of different mentalities and religions. Here the breakdown underlying the corporate ethic and individual is not united by the vision which is common in nation and there exist no leader that would have directed the team and their action in a different manner. Sadhu was supported by each traveler with respect to their ethical vision just to ensure that the plans made by sadhu should not be hampered. Thus it can be said that culture prevailing at the corporate somehow maintains the balance between the individual pertaining to the difference pertaining to single goal. The employees working in corporate are provided with clear messages about the corporate values on a continuous basis. Hence, it can be concluded that the employees can act in accordance with the business ethics if the organization possess a strong corporate culture.
2.
In this case, stage 3 which represent fairness to the sadhu has been reasoned by M. the individual generally remain focused on fulfilling the interest of an individual underlying the stage 2 but moves in accordance with safeguarding the interest of group. Since, in the previous attempt M was suffered by pulmonary edema, therefore the accomplishment of scaling the pass becomes more important for him. He thought that leaving sadhu with P and S would help satisfy his moral obligation. Stage 5 that represent social contract was reasoned by S, however the problem of S was not solved completely. S tried to get the Japanese group lend their horse for taking sadhu to the hut after M left sadhu for the summit. S asked P to carry sadhu down with the help of group of porters. However P refused to allow the porter to keep their energy intact for the summit and should not utilize the same in the middle of the way. However still porters carried the sadhu till five hundred feet and shown him the way to reach the hut. S was further pressurized by P for not delay anymore to reach the summit. Finally S ended up at stage 3 which represent fairness to sadhu due to the pressure of the group.
3.
In this case, some of the company possesses value that transcends the manager's personal values. Such value usually comes into picture when the organization is passing through some turbulence. Companies can undertake intervention, programs; processes for developing a healthy organization which help produce potential for effective leadership. Situational, transnational and transformational styles of leadership helps direct the employees for trusting their managers or leaders that help enhance the productivity. S has assumed the role of a leader and drive the people in such a manner that it will end up saving a human life. He also convinced the temporary leader S that a delay in travel is not more important than saving life of the human. He also convinced the porters to take the sadhu to the hut.
4.
In this case, the life in corporate is completely different to travel in the mountain. Employees of the company are united with respect to the mission of operation of company which is common in nature. The responsibilities and tasks assigned to them are focused towards accomplishment of the goals that are being already laid down. Moreover there exist hierarchy of clear up down underlying the corporate structure which means that there exist few or one leader on the basis of quantity of professional spheres existing underlying which the company has its operation. The group of J, NZ and S country's local porters has not come across any leader that could have made effort for uniting the representation of varied nations. It also prove to be a lesion for the company's manager that how stressful and difficult situation shows the ethical background of representative of different group. In case of existence of string corporate culture having well communicated, strong willed leader, ways of problem solving and individual thoughts can be overwhelmed by the corporate values. Thus it can be concluded that everyone behaved as an individual underlying the extraordinary and stressful situation that has prevailed in the parable of sadhu.

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Bhopal, India: A Tragedy of Massive Proportions Questions 1.Characterize the values illustrated by management at Union Carbide in the way it handled the Bhopal disaster. 2. Identify the ethical issues that arise from the facts of the case. How do you assess stakeholder responsibilities? 3.Compare the decision-making process used by Union Carbide to deal with its disaster with that of Ford Motor Co. in the Pinto case and Johnson Johnson in the Tylenol incident as described in this chapter. Evaluate management decision making in these cases from an ethical reasoning perspective. 4.The document uncovered by the Environmental Working Group Report refers to the acceptable "business risk" in the Bhopal operation due to questions about the technology. Is it ethical for a company to use business risk as a measure of whether to go ahead with an operation that may have safety problems? How would you characterize such a thought process from the perspective of ethical reasoning?
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Accountability of Ex-HP CEO in Conflict of Interest Charges img img Questions 1.When he was CEO, Hurd wrote in the Standards of Business Conduct at HP that "We want to be a company known for its ethical leadership…." His message in the preface continued: "Let us commit together, as individuals and as a company, to build trust in everything we do by living our values and conducting business consistent with the high ethical standards embodied within our SBC." What is the role of trust in business? How does trust relate to stakeholder interests? How does trust engender ethical leadership? Evaluate Mark Hurd's actions in this case from an ethical and professional perspective. 2. Despite hundreds of pages of policies, codes of ethics, organizational values, and carefully defined work environments and company culture, lapses in workplace ethics occur every day. Explain why you think these lapses occur and what steps might be taken by an organization to ensure that its top executives live up to values it espouses. 3.Leo Apotheker, the former CEO of HP who succeeded Mark Hurd, resigned in September 2011, after just 11months on the job-but he left with a $13.2 million severance package. Hurd left with a package between $40million and $50 million. Do you think executives who resign from their positions or are fired because of unethical actions should be forced to give back some of those amounts to the shareholders to make them whole? Why or why not?
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Do you believe that employees who observe more occupational fraud in their organizations are more likely to engage in occupational fraud themselves?
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Bennie and the Jets (a GVV Case) img img Questions 1.What process would you recommend Bennie Gordon follow in bringing his concerns out in the open? Do these include whistleblowing? 2.Assume you are Bennie's best friend and he asks you for advice. Consider the following in putting together a plan of action for Bennie to follow. • What are the ethical values that should be front and center in deciding how best to advise Bennie on what to do? • What reasons and rationalizations do you anticipate may be lodged by stakeholders based on the advice you might give? How would you counter them? • What levers can Bennie use to influence those that might disagree with him? • What is your final advice to Bennie and why?
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The following questions are about corporate governance and executive compensation: (a) How does agency theory address the issue of executive compensation? (b) How might stakeholder theory argue against the current model of executive compensation in the United States? (c) What is meant by the statement, "Compensation systems always become in part end and not simply means "?
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Franklin Industries' Whistleblowing (a GVV Case) Questions Assume you are in Natalie's position. Answer the following questions. 1.Consider the following assuming you have decided to act on your values: • What are the main arguments you are trying to counter? That is, what are the reasons and rationalizations you need to address? • What is at stake for the key parties, including those who disagree with you? • What levers can you use to influence those who disagree with you? • What is your most powerful and persuasive response to the reasons and rationalizations you need to address? To whom should the argument be made? When and in what context? 2.Assume you decide not to follow the script outlined in question 1 to bring the matter to the attention of others in the organization for fear of being fired. Do you think you have sufficient standing to file a whistle blower claim with the SEC under the Dodd-Frank Act? Explain.
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Walmart Inventory Shrinkage (a GVV Case) img img Questions Assume you are in Shane O'Hara's position. Answer the following questions. 1.Who are the stakeholders in this case and what are the ethical issues? 2. What would you do next and why? Consider the following in crafting your response. • How should the organizational culture at Walmart influence your actions? • What do you need to say, to whom, and in what sequence? • What are the reasons and rationalizations you are likely to hear from those who would try to detract you from your goal? • How can you counteract those pressures? What is your most powerful and persuasive response to these arguments? To whom should you make them? When and in what context?
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United Thermostatic Controls (a GVV case) Questions 1. Identify the stakeholders in this case and their interests. 2. Describe the ethical and professional responsibilities of Tony Cupertino. Assume you are in Cupertino's position and know you have to do something about the improper accounting in the Southern sales division. Consider the following in crafting a plan how best to voice your values and take appropriate action: • How can you get it done effectively and efficiently? • What do you need to say, to whom, and in what sequence? • What will the objections or pushback be, and then, • What would you say next? What data and other information do you need to make your point and counteract the reasons and rationalizations you will likely have to address?
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Explain how "groupthink" might lead a person to ignore moral and ethical duty in an organization.
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The issue of the size of executive compensation packages is explored in the text. The highest paid CEO in 2014 was David Zaslav, the CEO of Discovery Communications, whose total executive compensation package was $156.1 million, the vast majority of which was from stock awards. Critics claim that CEOs receive excessive executive compensation packages when compared with the average worker. Consider that NBA basketball star LeBron James took in $64.8 million in 2014,the majority of which was from endorsements, while radio and TV entertainer Howard Stern earned $95 million? Are the top paid corporate executives overpaid when compared to top entertainers? Why or why not?
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One way of analyzing whether National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden's actions were justified in leaking classified materials exposing the breadth of the U.S. government's surveillance activities is by weighing personal morality against the morality that comes with one's adopted professional role. Using this perspective, do you believe Snowden's act was ethical?
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It has been said that recent graduates from a business school majoring in accounting and just entering the profession are especially vulnerable to ethical missteps because they are often naïve and may not see the ethical aspects of situations they confront. Explain the various dimensions of such alleged ethical challenges in the workplace.
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Accountant takes on Halliburton and Wins! Questions 1.Describe the inadequacies in the corporate governance system at Halliburton. 2.Consider the role of KPMG in the case with respect to the accounting and auditing issues. How did the firm's actions relate to the ethical and professional expectations for CPAs by the accounting profession? 3.Some critics claim that while Menendez's actions may have been courageous, he harmed others along the way. His family was in limbo for many years and had to deal with the agony of being labeled a whistleblower and disloyal to Halliburton. The company's overall revenue did not change; a small amount was merely shifted to an earlier period. Halliburton didn't steal any money, cheat the IRS, or cheat their customers or their employees. In fact, it lessened its cash flows by paying out taxes earlier than it should have under the rules. How do you respond to these criticisms?
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Five months before the new 2002 Lexus ES hit showroom floors, the company's U.S. engineers sent a test report to Toyota City in Japan: The luxury sedan shifted gears so roughly that it was "not acceptable for production." Days later, another Japanese executive sent an e-mail to top managers saying that despite misgivings among U.S. officials, the 2002 Lexus was "marginally acceptable for production." The new ES went on sale across the nation on October 1, 2001. In years to come, thousands of Lexus owners discovered that some of the vehicles had transmission problems, which caused it to hesitate when motorists hit the gas or lurch forward unintentionally. The 2002-2006 ES models would become the target of lawsuits, federal safety investigations, and hundreds of consumer complaints, including claims of 49 injuries. In an August 15, 2005, memo explaining the company's position, a staff attorney wrote, "The objective will be to limit the number of vehicles to be serviced to those owners who complain and to limit the per-vehicle cost." In 2010, Toyota was fined a record $16.4 million for delays in notifying U.S. federal safety officials about defects that could lead to sudden acceleration. Do you believe national culture might have played a role in how Toyota handled the matter? What about corporate culture? What are the similarities between the Toyota case and the Ford and GM situations discussed in the chapter?
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In her book The Seven Signs of Ethical Collapse, Jennings explains: "When an organization collapses ethically, it means that those in the organization have drifted into rationalizations and legalisms, and all for the purpose of getting the results they want and need at almost any cost." Discuss what you think Jennings meant by this statement in the context of the giving voice to values discussions in Chapter 2.
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Olympus Summary of the Case * Questions 1.Does it seem reasonable that Olympus engaged in an accounting fraud for so long and the auditors did not detect it? Were the transactions in question and accounting for them something that should have been detected earlier through proper auditing procedures? What caused the failure of the auditors to act on the fraud? Explain. 2.Evaluate the corporate culture at Olympus including corporate governance. What were the shortcomings and what do you think caused them? 3.Do you believe Michael Woodford did the right thing by blowing the whistle on accounting irregularities? Were there other options open to him? Once he was fired, could he have made a whistleblower's claim with the SEC under Dodd-Frank? Why or why not?
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The 2011 National Business Ethics Survey defines "active social networkers" as people who spend more than 30 percent of the workday participating on social networking sites. According to the results of the survey, active social networkers air company linen in public. Sixty percent would comment on their personal sites about their company if it was in the news, 53% say they share information about work projects once a week or more, and more than a third say they often comment, on their personal sites, about managers, coworkers, and even clients. What are the dangers of such behavior for the employee and employer?
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