Quiz 3: Organizational Ethics


Ethics of research and development R D department carry the responsibility for the organization future growth. The ethical dilemma in the R D department is when the decision to be taken about product quality. They would check whether they are using good quality or compromising the quality to save money. The defective products not only put consumers at risk but also damage organization reputation. In this case study, marketing department vice president 'S' demands to know whether production date is firm with R D department director T. T assures S that the schedule for production is absolutely firm as they have done all necessary tests which indicates to go ahead. T says that they would do pilot production run and test at employee home for routine confirmation and assures that production date can be locked to go ahead with ad campaign. As a glitch appeared at the end of pilot test, this would delay the production date to one or two months or longer. T calls S to inform about the new production schedule but S says that as they confirmed production date is firm, major ad campaign went underway. He finds it critical to manage the dealers whom they promised new models. T says that he did not give firm production date and cautioned that a problem could appear in the pilot test. Also he says that it is better to have good quality rather than complaint from customers to dealers. T has expressed over confident over the call conversation with S regarding the firm date of production. If the end of the pilot test reveals a glitch that need to redesigned and approved by engineering team, then even T cannot do anything other than making it correct and postponing the production date. T's behavior is ethical as a R D professional because he cannot compromise with the product quality over delay.

Ethical theories are divided into three categories as mentioned below: • Virtue ethics: virtue ethics is about concept of living the life based on the commitment to achieve clear ideal. • Utilitarianism: utilitarianism is ethical choices that offer greatest good for the great number of people. • Universal ethics: Ethics that are called out of duty rather than based on the situational needs. In this case study, mortgage servicing company processes the mortgage payments and forwards the funds to mortgage holders. Lately, company is dealing with as many foreclosures as payments. Customer feels that there houses are 30 to 40 percent less than what they paid and started feeling that throwing good money after bad. Here, universal ethics are applied to the mortgage payments. As mortgage payments are legal contracts and customers and the house owners have legal obligations to make the payments that they are agreed. So, the actions of the mortgage companies are called based on duty and this cannot be changed based on situational concerns or needs. These principles are applied to everywhere, everyone and all the time.

The following are the four reasons that say HR is directly involved in code of ethics. • It is the responsibility of HR professionals to ensure that ethics are organization's top most priority • HR must include ethics component in the leadership selection and development process. • HR must ensure that right policies and programs are in place. • HR should stay abreast of ethical issues. In this case study, M joined the company and excited for his first day orientation. His boss S told him to skip all the HR videos on ethical codes and orally informed him not to harass any one at work place. He explained that the role he was hired was vacant for a while and they want M to catch up with work ASAP, which will be useful to make good impression on first day. So, he asked him to watch the videos later and sign the papers for now that he watched all the videos. S being a leader did not demonstrate a responsible behavior with the new employee asking him to sign the papers falsely. In future, if the employee does any mistake as he is not aware of ethics then it risks employee job and S will become responsible for that action. So, it is better HR must directly involve in providing the training videos for new hires in order to avoid such practices by leaders,