What Is Best Interest Of Our Shareholders Or A Sense Of Duty Or Universal Rules?

877 WordsJul 4, 20164 Pages
In today’s business world many people would suggest that we do what is in the best interest of our shareholders or for some company’s their stakeholders. Or that we should look out for what is best interest of the company. In the former example the company would take a more utilitarian stance, and in the latter a stance of egoism. What about good will, a sense of duty or universal rules that guide business decisions? The 18th century philosopher Immanuel Kant would suggest that these be the only thing that should play a factor when making any decisions, including those made in business. Kant’s theory took a nonconsequentialist viewpoint, in that we should not make decisions based on the consequences of our actions. Our actions should be based the will of goodness, or what Kant would describe as goodwill. When we act with a sense of good will, we act with a sense of duty. Whether or not we act with a sense of duty dictates if we have moral worth (Shaw & Barry, 2016). People often confuse altruism with having moral worth and autonomy, but people who act altruistically sometimes act out of their own self-interest (guilt, reputation) and therefore do not have moral worth. If I become an organ donor because I will receive Cavs Finals tickets, then this would resemble heteronomy, or performing an action for my own reward (Kondik). In Kant’s philosophy he discusses three imperatives which include: the categorical, hypothetical and practical imperatives. In Kant’s categorical

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