Should Individuals Holding Positions of Power or Influence Be Held to Higher Levels of Accountability?

Most people at any point in time have been faced with unethical companies or have made decisions to go by an unethical business practice. These are able to give companies as well as individuals a very bad reputation. The way one responds may be quite challenging. The truth still remains that not every person nor organization follows regulations to the latter.

Unethical business practices are the operations that do not meet the standards set for the acceptable business operations. However, not all unethical actions are illegal but they do hurt the community.

There are several examples of organizations that have been termed as corrupt because of the unethical business practices that they are or have undertaken. The relationship between a company and its stakeholders are able to define the ethical values that it possesses. One of the companies that have been involved in such a scandal is McDonald’s. Despite its global success, this company is still a target as it is faced with unethical business conduct. A bad business ethics in this company is termed popularly as “McDonald’s Legislation”. The company’s founder, Ray Kroc, made a rare donation totaling up to $250,000 in 1972 to Nixon’s reelection campaign. In return, they got a legislation that was favorable to them which allowed this company to pay all the teenage employees 20% less than the federal minimum wages(MSN, 2011). This was a move to serve their selfish ends as well as harm the society. In addition to this, they also do not allow their employees to be in any form of union. This thus ensures that they do not have a platform to raise their grievances. For instance, McDonald’s employees at St. Hubert Quebec formed a union and the company closed down this unit with immediate effect.

Another organization that has been involved in unethical behavior is Nestle. A research carried out by World Health Organization was able to find out that the children who fed on the Nestle infant formula were experiencing mortality rates 5-10 times greater than those who breast feed. Nestlé’s sinister campaign appointed uniformed nurses to aid in the distribution of the formula to the poor mothers for free. This was meant to last long enough till the mother’s lactating milk dries up(MSN, 2011). The mother and the child will thus remain dependant on the formula. Most of them could not afford the formula and thus they gave their children insufficient quantities of this. This formula also was to be mixed with clean water. This was what most women could not be able to access.

According to the two incidences that have been reviewed, I feel that these two parties should be held responsible at a higher level. For the case of McDonalds, they violated the workers’ rights through bribes. First of all, teenagers should not be working and if they need to work, there is some amount of payment that they need to be receiving according to the law. This company thus was able to find their way through this situation. It was like one way to save their money. They paid what could be termed as a “bribe” so as to be able to give their teenage employees laser pay. This was quite unethical and they should be held responsible for this as they amended the law illegally. The issue of not being able to form a committee is a clear indication of some sort of employee abuse. This is because this makes it hard for them to be able to express themselves and thus there will be no one to stand up for them in case of any form of abuse.

On the second incidence, Nestle seems to be making kids to increase their rush to the grave. As the survey suggests, it is clear that there is something contained in the formula that increases the mortality rate in children. We may not be sure about what their intention was for doing this is. The fact that they were taking advantage on the poor families is also very unethical.

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