Ethics Essay - Stuck in the Middle

1206 Words Nov 14th, 2012 5 Pages
Assessment Item 1: Individual Academic Essay

Ethical Dilemma # 4: Stuck in the middle?


It is important to understand why ethical decisions are made in business and what, if any, factors can influence the processes/procedures and ultimately the consequences of these decisions (Crane and Matten, 2010). All business activities involve some sort of decision-making but how people integrate ethics in that process varies from person to person.

Many employees today are faced with situations that require decisions to be made based on their moral judgment. Our civil engineer was challenged with an ethical dilemma when she was put in a difficult situation with contrasting views to the Director of Public Works.
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The civil engineer should express that, not only are the full time employees quite competent but are also very willing to carry out all required tasks.

To support this argument is the consequentialist theory of Utilitarianism where “an action is morally right if it results in the greatest amount of good for the greatest amount of people effected by the action” (Crane and Matten, 2010). Not only will the full time employees be motivated and inspired by being given the more challenging tasks but also there will be less of the company’s funds being spent on outsourcing contractors.

Negotiations with management

A lot of time and effort went in to preparing all the required documentation to present a valid point regarding the contractors, however the Director seemed disinterested in the topic and did not even take the time to personally discuss the issues with the civil engineer. He practically disregarded any of the concerns that were put forward.

As the civil engineer has noticed, a lot of important decisions are often made while the Director of Public Works, the Human Resources Manager and the CEO are out to lunch together. In this situation, the best approach would have been to hold a meeting with the entire management team and openly discuss the concerns with using contractors over the full time employees. Here

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