Business Ethics and Social Responsibility

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Transcript Business Ethics and Social Responsibility

Unit 1, Chapter 3
 Ethics – are the rules that help us tell the difference
between right and wrong and encourage us to do the right
 Ethical Behaviour – is behaviour that conforms to ethics –
individual beliefs and social standards about what is right
and good.
 Values – tell us what we think is important and this, in
turn, helps us make decisions about right and wrong.
 Morals – are the rules we use to decide what’s good and
what’s bad.
 A code of ethics – is a document that explains
specifically how employees should respond in different
 Watch the DVD – Raging Bull
 Class discussion to follow.
 A dilemma is a situation where there is a difficult choice
between two or more options. They have good points and
bad points on both sides. But not all dilemmas are rightversus-wrong scenarios.
 An ethical dilemma is a moral problem with potential
right or wrong answers. It occurs in business when a
business has a decision to make that weighs values and
morals against profitability and competitiveness.
 Whistle-blowing is the decision of an employee to inform
officials or the public about a legal or ethical violation. The
employee discovers unethical, immoral, or illegal actions at
the workplace and has to make a decision about what to do.
 Fraud – is the crime of lying or pretending. Some
businesses mislead consumers and try to trick them
into buying something in order to maximize their
 Accounting scandals
 An accounting scandal is a publicly exposed crime
involving accountants or senior executives who alter
accounting records for personal benefit. They
typically take place in large corporations.
 A forensic accountant is an accountant who investigates legal
and financial documents, looking for evidence of tampering.
Embezzlement is a type of accounting fraud in which an
accountant or senior executive invents phony accounts and
redirects company money into them for personal gain.
Assets are items that a business owns, such as buildings, land,
equipment, cash, and receivables.
Liabilities are debts that a business owes.
Auditors are outside accountants who check the financial
records of companies.
Insider trading – buying or selling shares in a company based
on confidential information. This type of illegal trading is dealt
with by the Provincial Securities Commission.
 Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) – where a
business exhibits their values, their ethics, and the
contributions that they make to their communities.
CSR Principles
1. Providing a safe and healthy work environment.
2. Adopting fair labour policies.
3. Protecting the environment.
4. Being truthful in advertising.
5. Avoiding price discrimination.
6. Donating to charity,
 Should a business develop and follow their own business ethics, or should they
simply follow the laws that apply to the business?
Duty to report – means that businesses must disclose all important
information to shareholders, business partners, lenders, insurers, communities
, regulators, consumers, employees, and investors.
Laws that Govern Corporate Ethics
1. Workplace Safety – In Ontario, the Occupational Health and Safety Act
(OHSA) was instituted to ensure workplace safety and health. This act defines
the rights and responsibilities of workers.
2. Antidiscrimination Issues –
Gender discrimination
Glass ceiling – describes the invisible barriers to senior leadership positions.
Page 95 Ethical, Moral, and Legal Considerations.
 Harassment – refers to those behaviours that are
found to be threatening or disturbing, and these
behaviours are not acceptable in society.
Accessibility Issues – employers have a duty to
accommodate an employee, regardless of ability or
disability. (Canadian Human Rights Act)
Environmental Responsibility
-Environmental Protection Act
-Kyoto Protocol
-Business and the Environment
 Labour Practices
 In Ontario, the Employment Standards Act sets out
certain mandatory minimum conditions of
 -Pay Equity
 -Privacy Laws
 Fair trade is the practice of helping producers in
developing countries bypass expensive middlemen so
they can sell their goods in other countries for a fair
 Grassroots movement is one that develops from the
up, not the top down.
 TransFair Canada is one non-profit organization that
assures consumers that the goods are certified and that
the purchases are benefiting the producers and