The purpose of this assignment is to assist you in refining problem-solving capabilities that organizations already possess for use in business ethics applications. This paper uses a structured, objective format sometimes called a system of inquiry. This assignment is a systematic formalized inquiry into, or examination of, the code of ethics of an organization and its effects to achieve a specific level of ethical behavior in employees, management, and executives. Each business should have a framework for ensuring ethical behavior. The structure, format, and scope of codes vary depending on the company’s business. An oil company’s code, for example, would probably have different criteria and emphases than a health care provider’s code of ethics. Sometimes, codes of ethics are called by other names, such as an employee code of conduct. A code of ethics, though, should be differentiated from standard good operating practices.
Evaluation and analysis includes problem solving and behavior in assessing organizational ethics along with decision-making processes. In this case, you are evaluating your own company’s code of ethics, or that of another company if your employer does not have a code of ethics.
Write a 1,200- to 1,400-word paper, one not using question-and-answer format, discussing your organization’s code of ethics in detail. Perform the following steps:
- Obtain a copy of your employer’s code of ethics or find an example on the Internet from a major corporation, such as Shell Oil Company’s Statement of Ethics. This is the document upon which to base your inquiry.
- Write a general information paragraph on the company, including its mission statement.
- Determine the type of ethical system used by the firm and reasons or examples upon which you based your decisions. Ethical systems include ends-driven, relativistic, entitlement, and duty-driven (legal or religious) ethics.
- Identify and discuss how the code of ethics is used. Include several paragraphs on each use: one for employees, one for management, one for the board of directors, and so forth. Some of this information comes from the company’s code of ethics. Others may be available through an Internet search. Consider the following:
- Why it is used—the general or special circumstances
- How it is used
- When it is used
Note. You may not be able to find all the information. In that case, state this fact and indicate which sources were examined with no results.
- Why might the organization need to modify their existing code of ethics? Consider how you might modify the code if you were the new CEO and how you would implement the changes.
- What possible reactions to the code are to be expected from employees and managers? What effects does the organizational culture have on the acceptance of the code?
- What is the effect of the code on the organization?
- Summarize the results of your systematic analysis or inquiry into the code of ethics of this organization.
Format your paper consistent with APA guidelines.
- Prepare an introduction and use section headings identifying each of the steps with information and discussion following. Summarize your findings in the conclusion.
- Do not include paragraphs directly from your company’s code. Summarize what is contained in the document. Your paper may contain no more than 15% unoriginal or quoted material.
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