The Malaysian Business Code of Ethics was formulated with the objective of: – * PreparingA the main principles to be applied by Malaysian trader for the benefit of themselves and their customers. * Would help archive high ethical standards among traders so that the interests of all parties are safeguard which in turn would bolster national economic growth. * Concoction of the universal aesthetical values gleaned from the doctrines and beliefs of the various religions, philosophies and cultures found within Malaysia.
Principles of the Malaysian Code of Business Ethics There are six Rukuniaga principles governing business practice: – 1. Sincerity in Business Dealing The traders sincerity must be reflected in every aspects of his business, including sale intent andA A agreement as well as in his thought, action and speech. For instance he should not try to camouflage the defect found in his product for the sake of making a profit. Similarly he should not manipulate supplies with undue profit as the motive. 2. Conscious of Responsibility Towards Customers, Society and Environment The trader’s every deed and thought must reflect his sense of responsibility not only toward his customers but also towards society as the whole and the environment. For instance Offering goods at fair prices, making sure services offered is commensurate with the quality of service. It is important that good or services sold/offered must not be socially or environmentally detrimental. 3. Geniality Towards Fellow Humans Business should be conducted in an atmosphere of mutual love and respect coupled with kindness.
Any action or decision taken must be for the common good of all and not solely to serve business interests. A For instance: in the case of a customer who mistakenly buys a wrong product and wants to exchange it with another product or wants a refund of money, the trader should accommodate the customer’s request so that he may well acquit his responsibility towards society as a whole. 4. Moderation In Business Dealing The trader should be humble, sober-minded, modest, moderate and frugal in all areas of life.
For instance :A businessperson who has made it to the top should not forget the roots but should be kind and considerate towards all those needing him. 5. Fair Treatment of Customers The trader should conduct himself in an impartial manner and his actions should not benefit any one party at the expense of the others. He should give equal treatment to all irrespective of race, class or status. For instance : He should not discriminate between a VIP and an ordinary person as the value of the money paid by either is the same.
6. Zeal in Business-Building A trader should be hardworking, diligent, patient, persistent, have the courage to take on risks and be armed with tenacity. For instance: When starting a new business, the trader should not resent the other traders in the market; instead he should let their success motivate him to climb the ladder of success. http://www. kpdnkk. gov. my/index. php? option=com_content&task=view&id=220&Itemid=250&lang=english There are a million ethical issues in today’s businesses and unfortunately there is no perfect decision measurement for all these ethical issues in business.
The ethical issues in international businesses are much more complicated and much more delicate, along with being tenfold in numbers. This article deals with the current ethical issues in businesses and attempts to look for ways in which one can tackle them. Economics suggests that business and production do not go hand in hand with environmental and societal ethics, due to the two being mutually exclusive events. Why it is so, can form a subject matter of a thesis so will not be a debate matter for this particular article.
This article though, discusses the various ethical issues in the business that affect all business workplaces, whether they are local or international. Let us have a look at the ethical issues in business, that are listed below in random order of importance. In business ethics, there is hardly a proper line which can be held on to like the bible, for ethics often sacrifice profits and the idea is to find the optimal balance between the two, so that the business conscience is clear and the profits are reasonable. Know more on ethics in workplace. In a Free, Unregulated Self-Ethics Model
If business ethics and values are left to the self of business houses and entrepreneurs, society may have many dead weight losses to bear. A few producers can collectively skimp on supply to increase market prices, a few strong buyers may collectively reduce demand till prices fall and a single entity can capture the entire supply chain and refuse its services to the free market and reserve them for the best price. To top it, the labor market can unite and ask for unreasonable increases in wages and the public transport unions can stand up for price hikes.
Who decides whether all this is reasonable and hence ethical, or unreasonable and thus unethical? Who says that an earner who earns lower than the minimum wages is entitled to a wage increase even by somewhat unethical measures that require some employer arm-twisting? Who decides that a person who already earns millions in profits is not entitled to reducing worker wages to earn higher margins because it is unethical? See what I mean, ethics change depending on which side you view them from. What may be absolutely right for you may be a gross injustice for me.
So, if the market is left to its own individual mechanics, the most important ethical issue of all will be that all those in strong positions will always be the ones manipulating the weaker ones. This is where business ethics comes in as a self-regulatory mechanism on the stronger players in the economy. Let us now move on to certain routine ethical issues in business that almost every business have to face. Know more on workplace ethics training. Contemporary businesses focus on profitability and success. They profess doing whatever it takes to make profits.
So, where do workplace ethics fit in such a scenario? Well, if you see the recent cases of scandals, frauds and irregularities that have been reported in the mass media related to business executives, it seems mandatory that ethics in the workplace make a strong comeback. But, how do you train employees in something like ethics? Clearly, you cannot make a syllabus of ethics, chart workplace ethics lesson plans and start preaching your employees, as values and ethics are something inbuilt. Here are some ways of workplace ethics training, which have been devised keeping these things in mind.
But before moving onto the training methods, let’s see why workplace ethics training is beneficial for your organization. Benefits of Ethics Training in the Workplace * Ethics training programs help in building strong teams and foster professionalism in the workplace ,thus increasing work productivity. * Due to the prevalence of ethical culture in the organization, the quality of goods and services provided by the company is not compromised. Hence, ethics training helps in quality management. * A company whose employees are known for strong business ethics has a strong public image.
This results in increased sales and profits, as the people trust their products and services more than those of any other company. Workplace Ethics Training Methods Written Code of Conduct Develop a written code of conduct. Define clearly what ethics in your organization mean. Distribute a copy of it, to all the employees. Defining and writing a code of conduct as well as the requisite workplace ethics guidelines in your organization will ensure that the employees know what is acceptable and what is unacceptable behavior.
Read more on written code of ethics is critical for small businesses. Develop a Culture of Ethics While formulating goals for the next year, give primary focus to ethics training in the workplace. Constitute an ethics committee at the board level. Make the CEO and the senior managers chief participants in this. Appoint an ethics officer, especially for this purpose. All these initiatives on your part will give an impression to the employees that you are very serious about the workplace ethics guidelines and policies.
Thus, ensuring an ethical behavior on the part of the employees. Involve the Staff Involve the employees, whenever you have a review of the codes. This will serve as a training in itself. Also, involve them in the review of the professional ethics and personnel policies. Be a Role Model Practice what you preach! If the senior managers themselves are involved in certain unethical behaviors like showing inflated profits or misusing the corporate finances, the employees will follow suit.
So, the senior managers and the CEO should themselves be morally upright, and present oneself, in such a way as is exemplary of ethical behavior. Incentives for Ethical Behavior Formulate such policies that reward ethical behavior on the part of the employees. Put in place some consequences for unethical behavior too. In performance appraisals, use ethical performance as a criteria for judging the employee’s work and decide his pay hikes and incentives accordingly. Discussions and Debates
Have regular discussions or seminars on the subject of business ethics and business etiquette. Choose topics like: “The importance of ethics in life”, “Personal values in conflict with workplace values” or “Do you think ethics are important for success. ” The main idea behind these debates and discussions is to make the employees think about their conduct in the office and take corrective measures if required. Role Plays Conducting role plays by using real life situations make the ethics training program interesting and encourage active participation.
Give real life situations to your employees and ask them to show their course of action in those scenarios. Give them situations such as: “You see an employee stealing office stationary, what will you do? ” Or “you are the sales person of the company and you give inaccurate information to a potential customer about the company’s product to make a sale. ” After role plays, present before them the consequences of these actions; like in the latter case, the customers will not trust the company again and this could prove detrimental to the company’s image.
Thus, conducting such sessions will make the employees think twice, before committing such errors in the future. These are a few means which you can adopt for workplace ethics training. Remember to train employees across departments and hierarchies of your organization. By clearly communicating the ethical values and codes of conduct to your employees, you are giving them the authority to take appropriate ethical decisions in any given situation.
Ethics are a personal code of behavior. They represent an ideal we strive toward because we presume that to achieve ethical behavior is both desired and honored. There is both personal and business ethics. I will describe my personal take on ethics along with experiences that I had working for Best Buy and the ethical dilemmas that I faced.
My personal thought on ethics is that they require accountability. I think that people that are religious and people that are not religious may have two ways to look at this. If religious accountability of personal ethics is to God. For the people who are irreligious, like myself, we can ensure ethical behavior by the law, fear, or personal convictions.
I believe that laws are guidelines that explain the expected behavior. Due to some people not having a “strong” sense of personal convictions the law is needed. The law to me is a set of ethical expectations that you must understand - failure to understand them will result with consequences.
For me - my personal ethics are the key to living, finding friends and determining my own convictions. Personal ethics in a large way define who you are. The code of ethics that not only follow but feel are important for people I surround myself with are:
These ten words describe to me what my personal code of ethics represent. We must have a right and wrong, a moral code. Most religions have a moral code of conduct, and most cultures have a minimum code of conduct also. In the case of society’s code of conduct, its laws, it is usually a-reflection of the moral values of a super majority of its population. Moral codes define our rights and wrongs. The combination, of determining right and wrong and being responsible for our actions, creates the standards for ethical behavior.
Ethics are of special importance to professionals - including retail managers. Retail employees have a great responsibility to the community with their jobs. People have everyday expectations when they go shopping and retail professionals need to have strong ethics. To understand why Best Buy’s ethics did not always match my personal code of ethics I will explain a few examples. Best Buy’s code of ethics is over fifty pages long - so only select examples will be used.
Knowing what is right and wrong may not always be simple. Most of the time, knowing the right thing to do is easy. Retail professionals, as I was, are often faced with many ethical decisions every day. Most often the ethically right answer is simple - this involves being honest and upright. Knowing what the right thing to do is not always simple - the responsibility of those around may not have been enough of a guide - to guide you in the right direction.
Ethics are very important to all business people. Yet, many neglect ethics as an important idea that has a major affect upon retail managers. Working at Best Buy the ethics that we were taught (also bolded on the fifth page of their ethics guide):
UNLEASH THE POWER OF OUR PEOPLE
LEARN FROM CHALLENGE AND CHANGE
SHOW RESPECT HUMILITY AND INTEGRITY
HAVE FUN WHILE BEING THE BEST
Before explaining the corruptions in ethics at Best Buy I did want to explain a few things. Best Buy was a great company to work for. I believe that at the corporate level the company was solid in the ethics that they preached. The situations that I was put in was down to the store level when I was an operations manager in Phoenix.
Ethics at Best Buy is determined by the supervisors that you have. I have worked for some people that were great with personal and business ethics. When I started work in Phoenix, AZ I worked for my store manager, Phil. The first thing that was done that I felt was beyond unethical is lying and manipulation.
When I interviewed for this job via phone it was described as one of the best stores in the district that I was going to be going to. Explained the current financials to me - along with the specific financials that I would be responsible for once I arrived. I was offered the job and moved to Phoenix 7 days later. When I went into the store I did what any good manager would do - I pulled my financials so that I could “know” my business before I started coming up with plans for my team.
Looking at the business I realized that the financials were no where near what had been explained. He stated that my store was ranked third in the territory. There are fifty-seven stores in our territory. My specific financials had placed me fifty-six out of fifty-seven stores.
The ethical dilemma I find with this specific situation is that he lied. Part of there code of conduct is integrity - to be a person of integrity you do not lie. In a position that he was in - it was not his personal ethics that I am looking at. I am looking at the ethics that Best Buy has put into place and expecting you to follow.
That is one dilemma that was really based on lying. I will explain another dilemma that I was forced to face with on multiple occasions. That would be the magazine scam. Have you ever walked into a Best Buy and heard the cashier offer you magazines. “With your purchase today you get eight risk free issues of one of our magazines - which would you like?” This offer was one that we dealt with when I worked in the Green Bay store a lot. How much information was ethically enough - and how little information made the practice too unethical? In the end we determined not to offer magazines in Wisconsin because of the ethical problems we were faced with.
When I moved to Phoenix as their operations manager - they explained how I would have to offer magazines again with my team. I knew that magazines were a problem with my own personal ethics lying, not truthful and not being fair to the customer. I started observing what there presentations to customers were and I could not believe what I saw. There offer was nonexistent but customers were still getting signed up. If a customer would pay with a credit card - they would scan for the magazines and have the customers sign twice; once for the purchase and once to accept the magazines.
I called around to a couple of the other operations managers and they explained how this was a “best practice” in the area and it was fine. This may have been a best practice to them - but not in my book. I ceased that offer immediately - part of my thought process is that if we were already ranked so low there is nothing that we could loose. We would never reach the store with the most traffic to, in my eyes, “Scam the customer.”
I stood my ground and got a lot of pressure from a lot of different people for this matter from store manager to my territory operations manager. In the end I used resources I had gained from my previous work in the midwestern territory to explain my situation and explain why I felt that it was wrong. The ethics team from our corporate office started doing inspections in my area. In the end we still had to offer magazines - but the right way. The way that felt good to me with my own personal ethics.
In the end ethics shape you, your community and your business. I have a personal code of ethics that I follow. My ethics are very simple and to the point but they work for me. Every person on earth has their own personal ethics - there is not one person that is the same. So what are ethics, and what constitutes ethical behavior? That depends, to some degree, on the person answering the question. Organizations also demonstrate the standard of ethics (or lack thereof) held by those shaping the culture of the business. Best Buy had an ethics manual - but it is difficult to force all employees to follow one specific manual. The same with people there are many ways that I have shared that I believe community helps with keeping ethics in check.