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Ethics and


Presented by:
C. Definition of Ethics


comes from the Greek word ethos , meaning

character , or a characteristics way of acting
. Ethics then seems to pertain to the
individual character of a person or persons.
 is the study of the moral behavior , or conduct
of man as viewed from ultimate principles
insofar as these principles are known by
human reason. Briefly , ethics is a philosophical
science dealing with the morality of the human

 comes from the Latin word moralis meaning
customs or manners. Morality appears to point
to the relationships among human beings.
D. Human Act and Act of Man

 A human act is one that proceeds from the

deliberate free will of man. It is an act that is
deliberately and knowingly performed by
one having the use of reason. Therefore,
both intellect and will are in play. It is an act
proper to man as man.
Act of Man

 Is one that is not dependent upon intellect

and free will. It is done human person but is
not proper to him as a person because it
does not stem from those faculties which
are peculiar to man, namely, intellect and
will. Thus, in everyday language, an act of
man is essentially an animal act.
For an act to be considered as a human act, it must
possess the following essential attributes:

1. Performing by a conscious agent who is aware of

what he is doing and of its consequences.

2. Performing by an agent who is acting freely,

that is , by his volition and powers.

3. Preforming by an agent who decides willfully

to carry out the act.
E. Elements Determining Morality

 Every human act derives its morality from

three components: the act itself (the
object), the purpose of an act (the end), and
the circumstances surrounding the act.
Moralists refer to these three elements as
an object, end, circumstances.
1. The act itself.
 It will be seen rather easily that, to judge the
morality of human act, we must first consider, the
act itself.

2. Purpose or end.
 The specifically human goal/purpose in business
should be the full perfection of human being as a
person. The goal means that the individual is not a
means to the end of society, the state or anything
 In these view, societies are means to absolute
achievement of the individual even though they
may contribute to this only indirectly.

3. Circumstances.
 there is an old saying, “ circumstances alter
cases.” that is true, and that is why the morality of
a human act must be judged in the light of the
circumstances. From the moral point of view, the
elements of a human act are those factors, distinct
from the act itself and from the purpose which
may affect the morality of the act.
F. The Concept of Responsibility

 John Stuart Mill, in one of his essays, On Liberty

(1859), explained how much control society has
over preventing or allowing the actions of a
person. His harm principle states that the only
actions that can be prevented are one that create
harm. The general principle relating with
responsibility is that whatever hurts the
individual or the institutions necessary for his
growth may be looked upon as an evil in some
Similarly, whatever truly promotes the
growth of the individual and the means
available to him is morally good. Such simple
statements , though true, will not easily solve
ethical problems. Nearly everything we do
has some harmful impact on others or
G. Principle of Double Effect

 We must recognize that there are different types

of evil consequences. Some crimes strike the very
dignity if the human being or at means which are
necessary for human growth.

 The principle of double effect justifies certain

actions that produce “indirectly” certain evil
consequences, provided, at least, four conditions
are met:
1. The action, by itself and independently of its
effect, must now be morally evil;

2. The bad effect must not be a means to produce

good effect;

3. The evil effect is sincerely not intended , but

merely tolerated; and

4. There is a proportionate reason for performing

the action, in spite of its evil consequences.
H. The Concept of Proportionality

The fourth condition of the principle of

double effect mentions the importance of
proportionate reason in performing a moral
action. What do we mean proportionality?
Proportionality is to be judged by :

1. The type of goodness or evil involved.

2. The urgency of the situation.

3. The certainty or probability of the effects.

4. The intensity of one’s influence on the effects.

5 . The availability of alternate means.

I. Ethical Concerns in Business

 One set of relationships and

responsibilities is directly related to
employees and includes such areas as
discipline, performance appraisal, safety, and
the administration of reward systems.
Another set is concerned with customers and
suppliers and includes the difficult aspects of
such elements as timing, quality, and price.

Ethical dilemmas also arise when managers

have conflicts in values with superiors or
peers over such things as strategy, goals,
policy and administration.
Whatever the viewpoint , good ethics mean a
good business. Successful organizations and
managers take ethics seriously. They reason
their way through ethical dilemmas to
acceptable solutions.

Some organizations and managers give the

appearance of success for a long periods in spite
of hidden unethical practices. The news is
replete , however, with stories of the fallen
heroes and devastated organizations that
ultimately result from this deception.
J. Identifying Your Ethical Concerns

Many businesspeople/ women report that

the ethical dilemmas they face are difficult
because they involve relationships with
people (employees, peers, and bosses) with
whom they have to work and whom they
are dependent.
The dilemma further complicates by the fact
that these desperate people may have
conflicting goals and competing needs.
Missteps in handling an ethical issue may
well affect a relationship, linger on the
conscience, for years to come. When
managers resolve ethical issue, they must
contend with the reaction of others within
the organization who may be affected by the
K. The Implications of Managerial Action

Engaging in business sometimes appear to

lose their perspective when making
decisions that affect people. Perhaps they
are busy, or maybe they jut don’t take the
time to think through the implications of
their actions. It seems unlikely they have
not had some ethical training.
Whatever the reason, the outcome is the same – an
employee or group of workers ends up being
treated arbitrarily and unfairly. Sacrificing ethics are
for the expedient accomplishment of a goal.
Once a senior manager makes a decision, it is
remarkable how often other managers act as if
there is no need to examine its ethical overtones.
Ethics have somehow suspended from evaluation
for this particular event.
The same is true when several managers with
a stake in the outcome agree on an
unfounded course of action. It is almost as if
the group’s agreement on a decision
eliminates the need to examine it regarding
right and wrong.
When such decisions are “ sanitized” of all
ethical considerations, everyone loses.
Managers fail themselves and all employees
by doing less than their best, and the
organization suffers a heavy blow to its
credibility as an honorable member of the
business community. As a business person/
woman, it is essential that you do not lose
your moral perspective when making
 James Lopez
 Je-sam Balauro
 Elvin Filosofo
 Rosalie Balansag
 Shekinah Paula Matillano
 Nelielyn Maylan
ED 14