Report Example on Ethical Crossroads: Exploring Business Ethics and Leadership Challenges

Published: 2023-12-19
Report Example on Ethical Crossroads: Exploring Business Ethics and Leadership Challenges
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Company Business ethics Leadership management
Pages: 6
Wordcount: 1567 words
14 min read

Q. 1. Your Thoughts? Please start with some recommendation to write

I agree with your argument on the legality and ethical justification for poaching employees based on the recruitment policies of a company. It may appear illegal when a recruiter pretends to attract employees from another company; however, it is not. Before a recruiter pursues an employee from a competitor, they inquire about existing agreements the employee has signed, such as non-disclosure, non-compete, and non-solicitation agreements (Anderson, 2018). It is important to note that in this tight labor market, employees are considering their options and according to a report by 2020 employee engagement platform Achievers, two-thirds of employees reported they might leave their jobs in 2020 (Anderson, 2018).

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Although an individual's loyalty to their company is a venerable quality, it is not needed in any means. Experts are perfect for selecting where they desire to be and when the time to seek a new job has arrived. Every person hopes to progress in their career and pursue lifetime-changing opportunities. A company should always strive to retain top-performing employees and nurture their skills (Anderson, 2018). However, a company will not always have a senior position available to employees to move up or match their personal timeline. As a recruiter, it is acceptable to pursue your competitor's staff, inform them about the job opportunity, and inquire from them if they are interested. If the employee is contented with their present job, they will notify you or not respond, which allows you as a recruiter to move on to another candidate (Anderson, 2018). It is not unethical, no harm, and no foul. If the employee is ready t to make a change, as an employer, it would be privileged to employ someone who already understands your customers and industry.

Q. 2. Is the Outsourcing of U.S. Jobs, including projects to foreign Countries, ethical if this leads to layoffs? Why or why not? Please support your rationales

Each year, most companies in the U.S. outsource millions of different jobs to employees in foreign countries such as China, India, and the Philippines. Hence, this has created a big concern and continues to be an ongoing debate among politicians, corporations, and workers on whether it hurts or benefits Americans, the economy, and the nation at large. Globalization has enabled firms to take advantage of the outside market to make production more affordable. Besides, companies have taken advantage of low costs of operations such as labor, manufacturing, and assembly, among others (DuBrin, 2010). The primary ethical debate on outsourcing is the "sweatshop" effect where employees get low wages and work in poor conditions compared to American ethical standards and laws. Hence, ethical implications must be accounted for before outsourcing to countries with lower labor costs. In a report by Hartman (2008), he argues that a profit motive propels the need for cheap labor. Therefore by lowering costs, businesses hope to reduce prices and hike profits.

However, I do not believe it is unethical for a firm to outsource even if it means layoff provided human rights are respected both internationally or locally. A company must ensure all the working conditions at the parent company must be consistent with the working environments in other countries. Ethical outsourcing implies employees have equal access and benefits to equal opportunities. In a statement by Ndubisi and Nygaard (2018), they argue that the ethical line of outsourcing in the sand is that: if a firm outsources due to corporate greed and the egotism of top executives, then outsourcing is unethical. Nonetheless, if outsourcing is conducted due to competitive necessity, and the needs of workers are a primary consideration during the procedure, outsourcing is considered the most ethical action that can be done.

Q. 3. What is the difference between business ethics and an ethical business? How do you know you have made the right ethical decision?

According to Schwartz (2017), business ethics is the review of proper business activities and rules concerning possibly contentious topics, for example, insider trading, business governance, bias, corruption, fiduciary accountabilities, and CSR. Often, business ethics are steered by the law; however, it at present a fundamental guideline that a company may choose to adhere to acquire public approval (Schwartz, 2017). Hence, business ethics can be perceived as the ethical and moral beliefs that govern the behaviors, values, and decisions of a company and the individuals within the company. Conversely, ethical business is a set of policies that control the method of communication between firms, work style, appearances of business people, and the sequence of negotiating (Schwartz, 2017). Thus, an ethical business identifies the power of carrying of operating business in a socially accountable manner and recognizes that doing so results in profit increase and customer satisfaction and reduces employee turnover.

Making ethical decisions is not always as easy as it sounds. I will be able to know I have made a moral decision by evaluating the expected outcomes, assessing the implication of the decision, and examining whether the action rule and values are in line with the standards of the company (Schwartz, 2017). Besides, I will assess the logic, rationale, and optimal of the decision, evaluate if the choice of solution is a convenient choice, and ensure the problem is solved.

Q. 4. What are the differences between an ethical issue and an ethical dilemma? Has recognition of ethical/unethical issues led to laws or have laws led to the recognition of ethical/unethical issues? Explain your answer.

Ethical dilemmas are a situation, problem, or opportunity that demands a person group, or organization to select among various wrong or unethical practices that do not have ethical or right options (Terziev et al., 2020). Hence, an ethical dilemma typically occurs when two or more standards or principles are conflicting. Conversely, according to Terziev et al. (2020), an ethical issue is a scenario that requires an organization to select between alternatives that must be assessed as right (ethical) or wrong (unethical).

I believe identifying ethical or unethical behaviors and issues has led to the recognition of laws that regulate ethics. Workplace ethical misconduct is a common occurrence, whether it is misusing company time, stealing, mistreating others, or violating business internet policies (Terziev et al., 2020). There have been cases of businesses such as banks going insolvent or bankrupt due to mismanagement or industrial strikes, which leads to loss of corporate time. Employees are most likely to engage in wrong activities if they do not know what is right, and without a code of ethics, they may be unscrupulous (Terziev et al., 2020). Workers, especially leaders, may have a conflict of interest, which may hinder them from conducting their work or the work of the company objectively and effectively, leading to mismanagement (Soskolne, 2016). Hence, a code of ethics is a proactive method for handling unethical behaviors. The Code of Ethics outlines the values of an organization and establishes boundaries of obeying those values. According to Soskolne (2016), at the level of the individual professional, codes of ethics can offer a practical guideline to employees and administrators who might encounter ethical or moral dilemmas regarding their professional behavior in given scenarios.

Q. 5. Many business executives (leaders) accused of unethical behavior have studied ethics either as a subject in a business course or as an entire course. So, what do you think went wrong?

Leadership is described as the procedure of social influence in which a leader directs followers towards a common goal (Downe et al., 2016). Conversely, ethical leadership displays normatively proper behavior via individual actions and interpersonal connections, and the encouragement of such behaviors to subordinates via decision-making, reinforcement, and communication. Although leaders have undergone training on ethical leadership, some leaders fail to become ethical role models, fail to treat employees fairly, and actively cultivate ethics in the organization. Part of this can be blamed for the apprehension of whether ethical leadership is abstractly different from other models of leadership, for example, transactional or transformational leadership. According to Downe et al. (2016), transformational leadership is about giving personalized consideration, inspirational motivation, idealized influence, and intellectual stimulation. Therefore, leaders can set an example and impact the behavior of subordinates. In transactional leadership, leaders only intervene to establish parameters, reward excellent performance, and discipline when standards have to be met (Downe et al., 2016). Also, leaders being trained on business ethics may end up being unethical because of the weak constructs of ethical leadership. Constructs of ethical leadership are still vague since they only focus on influence methods; however, it does not stipulate normative points of reference that ethical leaders can utilize in cultivating ethical behavior.


Anderson, D. (2018). Poaching Employees: Is it Ethical to be Recruiting from Your Competitors?

Downe, J., Cowell, R., & Morgan, K. (2016). What Determines Ethical Behavior in Public Organizations: Is It Rules or Leadership? Public Administration Review, 76(6), 898–909.

DuBrin, A. J. (2010). Leadership: Research findings, practice, and skills (6th ed.). Mason, OH: Cengage South-Western.

Knight, R. (2016, September 29). When the Competition Is Trying to Poach Your Top Employee.

Ndubisi, N. O., & Nygaard, A. (2018). The Ethics of Outsourcing: When Companies Fail At Responsibility. Journal of Business Strategy, 39(5), 7–13.

Schwartz, M. (2017). Business Ethics. John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated.

Soskolne, C. (2016). Chapter 19 - Ethical Issues.

Terziev, V., Koleci, R., & Solovev, D. (2020). Role of Ethics in Decision Making in Public and Private Organizations. SSRN Electronic Journal.

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