Case Study 1
This business ethics case study is given a scenario talking about Joe, a newly promoted district manager of computer operations for a large company, who has asked by Mary, Joe’s supervisor to report a positive feedback on a recently installed software to the CEO of the company. The problem is that the CEO recently received an anonymous letter from one of his employee to complain the poor performance of this software and Joe is also fully aware as well as agrees with the situation. However, Mary is the original supporter of this program and insists Joe giving a positive feedback to cover up the inefficiency of the software. Otherwise, Mary has implied to Joe that he could loss his job if he didn’t follow her directive.
The ethical decision making model, or so called the ethical cycle is the proper approach to the case study. Ethical cycle has six key elements, including moral problem statement, problem analysis, and options for actions, ethical judgment, reflection, and morally acceptable action.
To begin with the identification of the moral problem, in this case, the moral problem is involved with several aspects of business integrity, such as being honest, truthful, striving for fairness, taking responsibility, and maintaining concern for the greater good.
For instance, first, if Joe did what Mary asked him to do and gave a positive feedback to the CEO of the company, then Joe is apparently lie to himself by his understanding of given situation. He agrees that the performance of the software did not meet the company’s expectation, so he will not be truthful. Secondly, It is also not fair to the employee who has the same concern of using the software as well as it is not fair to the CEO to receive dishonest opinion. Thirdly, Joe is the manager of computer operations. It is his duty to keep company’s operation system running in excellent condition in order to contribute its best performance from making profit for the company. Joe’s responsibility is to keep the best interest for the company and the CEO is the most influential representative of the company. It is Joe’s job to report his professional point of view to the CEO and he is not responsible for covering up for Mary due to Mary’s poor judgment on her personal interest. Not to mention that if Joe did take his responsibility, then Mary’s position would be evaluated and there is a possibility that lead her career in danger. Lastly, the greater good is obviously to protest the business and create the best output for making greater profit for the company. However, the dilemma is also quite obvious. Joe could very well loss his job if he did everything he was suppose to do for the seasons above. Therefore, no matter which route Joe is going to take, the people will be affected by the resolution of the problem are the company/CEO, Mary, and Joe himself. It is not hard to see that moral issue of the problem involved with Joe’s decision on how his will report to the CEO his feedback. If he lies, then he will damage his integrity, which will not only hurt his career in case the company eventually find out the truth behind the software performance, but also jeopardies the integrity of the company by tolerant dishonest and mismanagement in the company as well as hurts the profit making process. On the other hand, if Joe did speak for the truth, then Mary will be certainly possible to match her word and fire Joe from disobey from her by putting her in disadvantaged situation.
Problem analysis contains three major key points. Some of the analyses have been explained in the moral problem statement. Here is the overlook to reinforce the statement. First, the stakeholders in this case are Joe, Mary, the CEO, the company as a whole, all employees, and consumer this company. The outcome upon Joe’s action could possibly lead himself to loss his job if he speaks the truth. As a result, Mary will be probably