“Ethical Decision-Making and the Role of the CECO”
In the wake of major ethics scandals of the past decades, including those at Enron, WorldCom, Chiquita Brands, Arthur Andersen, Bear Stearns, and Lehman Brothers, to name but a few, fostering ethical values and behavior has become a business imperative. According to a report by the Ethics Resource Center, business leaders are now expected not only to have an organizational ethics programs in place but also to establish an ethical workplace climate, which encourages ethical attitudes, perceptions, and decision-making processes (6). In many companies, these responsibilities have fallen to a newly created position within the C-suite—to the CECO, or chief ethics and compliance officer (CECO 2).
To engage you in considering this function, Assignment Three asks you to imagine that you are the newly appointed CECO of a company you select, but it must be one that is currently facing or has recently faced a significant ethical dilemma or breach. Assume that this ethical issue has just emerged (or been discovered), so no response or plan of action has yet been formulated. Any action the company has actually taken should be set aside. As CECO, you must investigate the issue, weigh alternative courses of action, and recommend to the CEO and/or board of directors the approach which best balances the needs of the business with ethical conduct and principles.
You will present the results of your research and analysis, along with your recommendations, in an informal investigative report. You should begin by researching the company and gaining a solid understanding of the ethical issue it is facing (or has faced). You should then apply two processes of ethical decision-making to the situation: the Framework for Ethical Decision Making developed by the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics and the Model for Ethical Analysis of Management Decisions developed by La Rue Hosmer. Finally, you should prepare a report which does all the following:
Introduces the ethical issue facing the company and explains its nature
Presents the relevant facts of the case (bearing in mind the audience’s existing knowledge)
Identifies the stakeholders involved and weighs their interests
Determines the possible options for action
Evaluates these options on the basis of at least three traditional approaches to ethics (e.g., utilitarian, rights, justice, common good, virtue, etc.)
Determines economic impacts and legal requirements by applying the Hosmer Model
Recommends the best solution as well as methods for implementation
Length: Your report should be three to four single-spaced pages in length. You should format it as a long memo with appropriate