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Role and Responsibilities


According to Peter Pratley (The Essence of Business Ethics), it is important to define core moral responsibilities at a minimal level.

The Core Moral Responsibilities are threefold

Firstly: The corporation is committed to its original & basic moral core responsibility i.e. producing goods and services that are fundamental and safe for the individual consumer. (Basic responsibility)

Second: Responsibility concerning the larger environment, including reduction of resource depletion.

Finally: Maintaining the quality of corporation itself as a moral community. At a minimum level this implies the absence of certain abuses.

All this aims at guaranteeing a minimum of moral excellence. This is what the public may at least expect from an entrepreneur committed to quality management. These entrepreneurial responsibilities redefines corporate objectives. The entrepreneur should thus commit himself to the wider human objectives.

To Summarize: 1. Three responsibilities at a minimum level include: (a) Consumer care: satisfying demands, product safety. (b) Environment care. (c) Care for minimum working conditions. 2. Corporations should not remain mute about their moral commitments. Communicating the priorities of a corporation in its commitment to quality management by a sophisticated use of moral talk is important.



Managers may, for instance discuss and emphasize ethics continually. A code of ethics works only when a manager talks about it by encouraging subordinates to raise ethics-related issues & keeping others attention focused on it. Managers must also develop and articulate realistic goals. Employees who are confronted with goals they cannot achieve are tempted to cut corners, sacrificing ethics for achievement. Managers must avoid such ethical problems by discussing with employees the sorts of temptations that might arise.

By encouraging reporting of unethical activities, managers should let all employees know that each of them has an important role in enforcing ethical standards. Finally, values cannot be taught, they must be lived. Each manager must demonstrate ethics through their own behaviour. If employees see that unethical behaviour is practiced or tolerated, they will pay little attention to written codes of ethics.

Ethical decision making is the key to effective management. Role of top management is critical. Maya Reddi in her article Ethical Organization: Role of Top Management states that it helps in setting of standards of business behaviour. Senior management is often perceived to have double standards. This must be avoided. Integration of ethics in personal and business life i.e Before setting business standards, managers should internalize ethics and morality.

Managers must stand out like a light and be able to pass the test of intense scrutiny.


Creating an ethical environment Educating and training workers on ethics/ethical codes/standards. Act with integrity. Promote ethical management.