Ethical And Legal Boundaries Of Wells Fargo

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Wells Fargo is an American bank that was created in 1852 by Henry Wells and James Fargo. It is the second largest bank in the USA in terms of market cap, operates in over 42 countries around the world, and has over 260,000 employees.

In 2016, federal regulators caught Wells Fargo, creating millions of fake bank and credit card accounts; over 1.5 million bank accounts were created. Furthermore, federal regulators also said that 565,443 credit cards were created, and 1400 of those accounts had been charged over 400,000 dollars in fees. Wells Fargo employees broke many ethical and legal boundaries and engaged in counterproductive work behavior.

Counterproductive work behavior has a negative impact on the company, it’s employees and …show more content…

This practice was so common that Wells Fargo employees had several methods for doing this. The first method is sand bagging. Sand Bagging involves failing to open accounts by customers at their requested date, instead accumulating accounts to open in the next sales period to inflate profits. Another practice was called Pinning which was creating pin numbers without customer’s authorization, and attaching them to credit cards. Then employees would impersonate customers on Wells Fargo’s computers and use these pin numbers to create online banking and bills for customers. Finally, a practice called bundling was done where Wells Fargo employees would mislead customers saying that certain banking products were only available in bundles which forced customers to add more products than they wanted. So, one wonders, how could this have happened? Why did high expectations of sales lead to unethical, almost criminal behaviour? This is tied to Goal Setting theory. Goal setting theory, created by Edwin Locke, states that employees are motivated by clear goals, and appropriate feedback. Individuals that were given clear, specific and difficult goals had greater performance than individuals given general and easy goals. However, research has shown that setting unattainable and challenging goals can lead to risky or even unethical behaviour. A study done by

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