Free Essay with a Case Study: The Global Ethical Performance of Apple Inc.

Published: 2022-06-27
Free Essay with a Case Study: The Global Ethical Performance of Apple Inc.
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Business ethics
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 1010 words
9 min read

The Apple corporate strategy is to engage in producing quality digital products that offer satisfaction to its customers in a way that does not compromise the health of the customers and the environment at large. The company in its vision statement states that it believes in product specificity and would decline opportunities that would not allow them to make significant contributions in the market (Farfan). Apple is anchored on honesty to admit the existence of the problems. Through the company vision statement, the willingness to gather the courage to change whenever they are wrong is at the center of their ethical business strategy.

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Apple has recorded decent ethical performances in its operations. On environmental conservation, the company leads the adoption of green energy campaigns by making it a policy that green energy powers all their facilities in all its global subsidiaries (Apple Environmental Responsibility 2017, p. 4). Apple has invested in environmental innovation by creating a robot (Daisy) that extracts useful materials from waste electronics for recycling (Apple Environmental Responsibility 2017, p.5). Apple stamped its authority as the chief environment sustainability campaign activist when it added one billion dollars to its 1.5 billion dollars first green bond after America withdrew from the Paris Climate Agreement.

Apple is one of the most prominent corporations that have the confidence of the public not only because of the quality of their products but due to their ethical standards that manifest in their honesty and respect for customers. There are different occasions in which Apple as a company has demonstrated their ethical performances in business. Despite these appalling records of absolute adherence to ethical standards, the company has had its low moments trying to erase its name from the bad books of engaging in unethical practices before. In 2012, Apple was accused of tax evasion (Norris). The accusation involves the transfer of the intellectual property that has been developed in America to foreign nations categorized as tax havens to avoid the proceeds from being taxed.

The ethical performance of Apple can be attributed to its leadership. Both the moral and the unethical achievements of Apple are distributed in virtually all their global subsidiaries meaning the decisions emanate from a central headquarter. Apple has been accused of evading taxes in the countries they operate, beginning with the mother country the United States (Norris). Besides the leadership decision, there is a popular corporate trend among big multinationals in America to take advantage of the tax loopholes to evade paying as much task as they should (Norris). Apple is not operating both ethically and unethically in isolation. It is a corporate trend to engage in ethical activities to earn the public admiration and acquire an excellent public relation status, and in unethical actions to take undue advantage of situations-mostly to minimize costs and maximize profits.

There have been controversy and contradiction in determining whether Apple's ethical performance complies with its organizational business strategies. It has been difficult to conclude due to the inconsistent pattern of both negative and positive reports about the company's involvement. As the situation stands now, Apple seems to have gotten its ethical performance strategies together by being on the forefront among the most ethically -conscious corporates not only in America but the world (Williams). In line with their organizational strategy, Apple has kept its word of engaging in the sustainable production of quality products in a manner that is both friendly to human and environmental health. The company has thrown its weight behind social life-changing projects and has worked on minimizing its unethical performance to an all-time low since it was founded.

The Apple CEO Tim Cook takes credit for realigning the Apple ethical performance with the organization's business strategy. For the time that he took over from the Steve Jobs- the late CEO and co-founder of Apple- the company's ethical performance index has undergone tremendous improvements (Williams). The vision statement talks about the company admitting when it is wrong and would be willing to correct the errors. Under Tom Cook's leadership, the first thing he did as the manager was to admit the existence of unethical practices in the company (Williams). He then rolled out an exercise to rectify the situation. Most importantly, Tim Cook has steered the company towards the envisioned path of sustainable production.

The modification that Tim Cook has initiated and implemented in the Apple Company are manifold. When Tim Cook rose to the helm of the management as the CEO, he made the first significant step that most CEOs would not dare; he acknowledged the existence of the problem and went public about it (Williams). After admitting the problem, he swiftly moved to commission investigations into reports of child labor, compulsory overtime and deplorable working conditions in their factories based in China (Williams). Tim Cook also invested most of the company's resources in environmental sustainability programs in the same process that it made it made it a policy to only use green energy as an example.

Based on its ethical status under the stewardship of Tim Cook, Apple can now be authoritatively classified under ethical corporations. The contribution of the corporation in encouraging environmental sustainability in its production process cannot be gainsaid. Besides environmental activism, Apple has upheld labor laws and the overall protection of the fundamental human rights under its supplier responsibility. The pace, thrust, and dedication with which Tom Cook is steering Apple make it rational to exude confidence that Apple is a global ethical corporation today.

Works Cited

Apple Environmental Responsibility 2017,. Corporate Fiscal Year Progress Report. Carlifornia: Apple Inc, 2018. Document.

Apple Supplier Responsibilty Report 2017. Corporate Annual Progress Report. Carlifornia: Apple Inc., 2018. Document.

Farfan, Barbara. "Apple Company Mission Statement Not Innovative, Inspiring, or Jobs-ish." The Balance 24 December 2017. Online Source. 15 July 2018. <>.

Norris, Floyd. "The Corrosive Effect of Apple's Tax Avoidance." The New York Times 23 May 2013. Online Source . 15 July 2018. <>.

Williams, Glyn. "Tim Cook's Most Notable Hits And Misses As CEO Of Apple." Forbes 27 February 2017. <>.

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