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Business Ethics

Business Ethics

Meaning of Business Ethics

Ethics is the foundation of society. The conduct of a human beings should be in conformity with the norms and values of the society, Ethics refers to that branch of philosophy which is concerned with human character and conduct. Ethics directs a persons to judge what is fair or unfair, moral or immoral, right or wrong.

In the context of business organizations, ethics refers to a system of morale or rules of behavior which should govern the conduct of business organizations. More specifically business ethics provide a code of conduct to business organizations. Business ethics directs the businessmen as to what is moral and what is immoral in the conduct of business from the point of view of society. For example, producing quality goods, charging fair prices not indulging in un fair trade practices, black marketing and hoarding, paying fair wages and salaries to employees, paying taxes honestly, abiding by governmental legislations, concern for the community etc.

Elements of Business Ethics

Important elements of business ethics are as follows:

  1. Honesty :

    By far the most important element of business ethics is honesty. It is also remarked in the context of business, “honesty is the best policy” The businessmen should be honest to his customers, employees, government and the society in general.

  2. High moral values :

    Ethics is based on high moral values. In fact its moral values are the guiding force of business ethics.

  3. Equity :

    Equity implies equal treatment to all without any discrimination on the basis of caste, creed, sex or religion. Ethics also emphasize this.

  4. Guiding force :

    Ethics act as a strong guiding force. It exhorts people to act in the best interest of all sections of society particularly the weaker ones such as children, women and the minority community.

  5. Self imposed discipline :

    Ethics is a self imposed discipline. It is adopted voluntarily. No one asks or compels anyone to follow ethics.

  6. Legal framework :

    Last but not the least legal framework is an essential element of business ethics. Although it is said that ethics is a self-imposed discipline yet businessmen left to themselves will not adopt ethical practices. It is because of this fact professional institutes such as the Medical Council for India. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, the Institute of company Secretaries of India etc. have framed elaborate code of conduct. These institutes have prescribed stringent penalties for their violation by their members.

Role of Social Responsibility of business in Preventing industrial pollution

Industrial pollution is caused by industrialization. Since industrial pollution is caused by industry, it must also assume social responsibility for its prevention. The industry should take following steps to check industrial pollution :

  1. Compliance of directives issued by Government and other institutions working in the area of pollution control.
  2. Cooperating with NGOs working in the area of pollution control
  3. Use of new technology to hek air, water and soil pollution.
  4. Self imposed discipline to check and prevent all types of industrial pollutions.
  5. Proper disposal of industrial wastes, gases and chemicals, etc.

Important links

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