Business ethics

You manage a large, high-end jewelry store with an international clientele in a country of your choice (EU- or US-based). Your workforce of 150 is demographically diverse, and your employees are trustworthy as a rule. However, you have experienced some unexplained loss of inventory and suspect a couple of employees are stealing valuable pieces, removing them from backroom storage safes and handing them off to another person somewhere in the store who leaves with them or to a third person pretending to be a customer. To prevent this, your assistant managers are urging you to place discreet cameras in the restrooms and break rooms, where these exchanges are likely occurring. Some managers might be concerned about using cameras at all due to privacy issues; others might want to use them without notifying employees or putting up signs because they do not want to tip off the suspects or deal with the negative reaction of the workforce (although that brings up invasion of privacy issues). You are weighing the pros of catching the thieves against the possible loss of other employees’ trust.

Find a solution by going through the ethical decision making process with Kidder‘s 9 steps! Keep legal restrictions in mind (EU and US)

Kidders 9 steps:

  1. Recognize that there is a problem (is it a moral issue?): Drawing distinctions between moral questions and those that merely involve manners and social conventions.
  2. Determine the actor(s): Who is (personally) responsible for addressing the problem? Identify stakeholders and consider the benefits and harm to actors.
  3. Gather the relevant facts (details make a difference)
  4. Test for right versus wrong issues (stench text, frontpage test, mom test)
  5. Test for right versus right values: Honesty vs. loyalty, individual vs. community, justice vs. mercy, short-term vs. longterm
  6. Apply the ethical standards and perspectives (which normative ethical principles should be applied here? Utilitarianism, Combination/Pluralism?)
  7. Look for a third way. Maybe the dilemma can be solved in a different way 8. Make the decision. Apply moral courage
  8. Revisit and reflect on the decision. Learn from your choices. What ethical

issues were raised?

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