Thursday, October 18, 2012

Week 7 Reflection

There was a lot to take in this week.  This may have been one of the first weeks that I have really seen concrete ethical principles and strategies in corporate business.  I liked the presentation of the information this week.  The style and flow was different but it worked for me.  There was a certain practicality to what the textbook discussed.  The information about corporate social responsibility vs. corporate citizenship was particularly interesting as I did not know the difference until the book clarified the matter.  The topics were practical and the information was thorough.  It was not abstract.  Even though ethics can be a little wishy-washy sometimes, this week it was clear, very cut and dry.  Not only was the text clear on they what and the whys but so was the lecture.  

One question in particular that usually gets ambiguous responses is what to do if there are extenuating circumstances or pressures.  For me, I have my faith in Christ guide me and hold me accountable for my actions regardless of circumstance.   The lecturer made a very clear statement about ethics in relation to circumstances that could apply to people who maybe do not have that clear conviction of faith.  She said something to the effect of: if one person does it then it is alright for anyone else to do the same thing in any situation.  

In short if what we are doing only applies to us then we are not playing by the rules and probably acting unethically.  If someone else were to do the same thing as me, would I be upset or offended?  With that said I’m not a huge fan of ethical universalism or relativism.  I lean more toward the integrative social contracts theory.  There are times when local ethics may be more relevant to a company or the consumers; however, there are certain universal ethics that should be adhered to if local customs or norms could cause harm or other negative consequences.  The text and lecture were clear.  We cannot make blind isolated decisions.  Ethics has to be intentional.   

1 comment:

  1. Exactly Krystina. What I said in lecture is that you should put yourself in the shoes of others and think about whether you would be happy if you were affected by the action. In other words, consider the stakeholders. You also touch on the fact that it is important to have a systematic way to evaluate your decisions, as opposed to making them on a case-by-case basis. Interesting reflection, thank you.