Workplace Ethics: Case Studies

Identification of the ethical issue or problem.

Marwa, an administrative assistance in the human resource department gets a copy of the actual interview questions and considers making a copy for her friend Manhal so that she can best prepare for the interview. This could be considered as cheating or even fraud. This is not the right thing even if they are not noticed.

List of the facts that have the most bearing on the decision.

First of all, Marwa is friends with Manhal.

Manhal wants to pass the interview and get a job.

Marwa the friend already working in the company will feel very happy if her friend gets the job and have a source of income for her self.
Because they are friends, maybe Marwa will enjoy working together with Manhal in the same company.

Marwa is in a very good position as an administrative assistance in the human resource department to get the copy of the actual interview questions.
Identification of anyone who might be affected by the decision and how.

Marwa will be very much affected because she is cheating and as a policy this is wrong and she can end up loosing the job she holds dear to her.
Once the company realizes that Manhal got the job through the wrong way, she may also loose the job even after believing that she has the job.
work place ethics.

Manhal could not be the qualifying candidate for the job and having her work for the company could mean that she will not properly handle the tasks she will be assigned thus pulling the company down and probably making it incur some loses.

The friendship that is there between the two, Marwa and Manhal, could be destroyed because Manhal might say that Marwa did not advice her properly about the interview and what she did could be the reason as to why she may loose the job.

One of the two friends could end up feeling guilty for the bad consequences the other might face.

List of three alternative actions and identification of the best and worst case scenario for each alternative [who would be harmed by this choice and how, values that would be compromised by this alternative, and any automatic reasons why this alternative should not be selected];

Other than stealing the copy of the interview questions for the friend, Marwa could have helped her friend by advising her on what goes on in the company and trying to think of the possible questions she could be asked even if they might not have been sufficient for the interview. However Manhal knowing that her friend was at a position to offer her with the copy of interview questions she could have felt betrayed.

Second, Manhal should not have gone to seek help from her friend in fear that she could risk her job. Marwa could have felt as if her friend did not appreciate any assistance she might have given her friend. Manhal could have prepared for the interview alone and might have failed.

Explanation of what each affected person would want me to do about the issue;

Causing the company such a problem is not right and Marwa should apologize for the wrong did and promise not to do the same again.
Manhal, the friend would expect that Marwa apologizes also for making her go through such a shaming situation.

Determination of a course of action.

The company should lay down it rules that must be followed where failure to do so would be punishable. Employees should be aware of them and the consequences that would follow if one broke them. This way, every one will be cautious and such an act by Marwa will not be repeated again. Case 2:

Identification of the ethical issue or problem;

Emily, the quality controller decides to take one computer from the twelve she was given by her supervisor to deliver to schools and gives it to her son who requires a computer in the college.

List of the facts that have the most bearing on the decision.

Emily needs a computer for her son who is studying at college.

The supervisor provides 12 computer systems to Emily as excess to requirements to deliver to schools.

No specific records are kept other than what Emily produces herself. Emily is there fore at a position to take one computer without the knowledge of her supervisor and give it to her son and she is very sure she will not be caught.

Identification of anyone who might be affected by the decision and how;

If this act by Emily is continued the company will forever keep wrong records on the number of computers they will be delivering to schools.

Emilys son receives a old computer which he has not seen his mother buy for him and he might know that his mother got it wrongly for him.

A friend who might have known of Emilys small secret might tell on her and this might bring bad effects on Emilys job.

List of three alternative actions and identification of the best and worst case

scenario for each alternative [who would be harmed by this choice and how, values that would be compromised by this alternative, and any automatic reasons why this alternative should not be selected];

В· Emily should have delivered the entire package to the school without taking one for her son. This would mean that she uses her money and buy her son a computer.
В· The company would have had a better way of keeping records other than entirely depending on what Emily submitted to them. This would mean that Emily could not get a chance to get one of the companys computers for her son.

В· The son on the other hand should not have accepted the computer which had come from the company because it is wrong to do so. This means that he could have continued waiting for the mother to buy him a computer even if it would have taken long.

Work place ethics.

Explanation of what each affected person would want me to do about the issue

The company expects that Emily is trustworthy with their computers and this is why they entrusted Emily with them. Emily should therefore be honest in her doings so that the trust continues. She should apologize and never repeat such a mistake again.

She should return that computer to the school where others were taken.

She should also apologize to the son and buy him his own computer. She also should learn good morals such that they govern her from committing such crimes.
Determination of a course of action.

The company should have better recording systems so that they can tell when such crimes are committed. The company should also set their own rules which must be followed and failure to do so should be punishable. They should also employ people of good morals in the company.

Emily should buy her son a computer without relying on the companys computer.

Case 3. Identification of the ethical issue or problem;

Marvin, the secretary breaks the policy of using his departments computer meant for business purposes only by creating time from his work of 30 minutes each day after the Supervisor goes home, and then does personal work on it without the Supervisors knowledge. An employee should be obedient and respectful of their employers.

List of the facts that have the most bearing on the decision.

Marvin needs to get familiar with the new computer.

There is a time when the supervisor goes home and leaves Marvin alone with the computer such that he can use it anyhow without the supervisors knowledge.

There are strict rules on the use of the computer so Marvin has to devise a way that he can do other things with the computer other than the office work.

Identification of anyone who might be affected by the decision and how;

The department may be affected by this decision because Marvin does not concentrate on business work but does his work when left alone in the office.

If any one tells on Marvin about his decision to misuse the departments computer, he may end up loosing the job.

The supervisor may also be affected in the sense that he may feel as if he is not respected by his junior at the work place.

List of three alternative actions and identification of the best and worst case scenario for each alternative [who would be harmed by this choice and how, values that would be compromised by this alternative, and any automatic reasons why this alternative should not be selected];

Marvin should get familiar with the computer by doing office work and not including his own work in the office. This will mean that he create time after work and do his work. This way, he will complete all the work assigned to him by the supervisor on time.

The supervisor should not let his juniors work alone but should always he there to avoid such scenarios. This would mean that the supervisor will stop going home earlier than his juniors at work.

The supervisor should give Marvin a lot of office work such that Marvin would not be tempted to do his own work on the departments computer.

Explanation of what each affected person would want me to do about the issue

I would advice the office to be giving Marvin enough work to occupy him throughout the day so that he is not tempted to do his work using the departments computer.

I would tell Marvin that going against set policies is wrong and in the future he should learn to follow instruction.

I would also tell the supervisor to explain to his juniors the consequences of turning against the policies of the department so that they learn to keep those them well.

Determination of a course of action.

Marvin should be told that what he is doing is wrong and if he repeats it again loose his job for failure of doing what is right.

Case 4. Identification of the ethical issue or problem.

Ahmed tells about a loophole in the employee benefit program that could allow someone to receive extra financial help to Richard. Mansour, a fellow worker, overhears the conversation and does not report it to the supervisor.

List of the facts that have the most bearing on the decision.

Work place ethics.

Ahmed is desperate for financial assistance to help pay health care costs for his mother.

Ahmed knows about a loophole ion the employee benefit program that could allow someone to receive extra financial help.

Mansour is a fellow worker and fears that may be his friend might loose their jobs if he told the supervisor about the conversation he heard.

Identification of anyone who might be affected by the decision and how;

Richard is led into committing a crime by his friend Ahmed.

If Mansour tells on the two, they might loose their jobs.

Mansour is guilty of not telling the supervisor about Ahmed and Richardss conversation, thereby letting the company benefits program be in trouble and short of funds.

The supervisor suspects that Mansour knows something that he has not told him earlier.

List of three alternative actions and identification of the best and worst case scenario for each alternative [who would be harmed by this choice and how, values that would be compromised by this alternative, and any automatic reasons why this alternative should not be selected];

Richard, when told about the loophole in the employees benefit program should not have gone ahead and take money through it but should have warned his friend by properly advising his. This means that the friend could not have gotten money to go and provide care to the mother.

Mansour should also have told the supervisor about the conversation he overheard even if it meant hurting his coworkers.

Ahmed should have gone to seek assistance from else where even if it could have taken longer.

Explanation of what each affected person would want you to do about the issue.

I would be very sorry about the mother who needed health care but could have advised Ahmed to be open next time when he find a loophole anywhere in the company and not to take it to his advantage.

I also would have warned Richard to keep away from bad influence and always to be loyal to the company even if it means denying himself some pleasures.

I would have advised Mansour to be open on anything that affects the company and tell on any such incidence when he hears it again
.
Determination of a course of action.

Richard and Ahmed should tell the company about how they found the loophole and even return the money they had taken through it.

Mansour should also be told that this is also his company and should not keep quite when he knows something is wrong with the company.

Case 5: Identification of the ethical issue or problem.

Jennie uses companys copier for her son as a priority over company business.

Work place ethics.

List of the facts that have the most bearing on the decision.

Jennie is a receptionist and is responsible for making copies for management meetings so the copier is at her disposal

Jennies son is in need of some copies for a school project and if he doesn’t get the copies, he might fail the project.

After all Jason brought his own paper and needs 300 copies for his class.

The company copier does not require a security key nor do they keep track of copies made.

Identification of anyone who might be affected by the decision and how.

The company is affected because Jennie uses companys copier for her son as a priority over company business.

This could be known and could of bad consequences to Jennie.

List of three alternative actions and identification of the best and worst case scenario for each alternative [who would be harmed by this choice and how, values that would be compromised by this alternative, and any automatic reasons why this alternative should not be selected];

Jennie should have given her son money to go and make the copies else where other than using the companys copier. This would mean Jennie use her own money for her son not to fail.

Work place ethics.

The company copier should require a security key and they should keep track of copies made. This would mean that Jennie would not have dared use the copier for her sons copies in fear that she could be noticed.

The son should have talked about the copies he needed at home other than coming to his mothers place of work making her use the copier for him as a priority over company business. May be there could not be any money at home and Jason could end up failing at school.

Explanation of what each affected person would want me to do about the issue.

I could have told the company to have security key and keep track of copies made so as to avoid such temptations from being done.

I would advice Jennie to deal with her son at home and never allow her son come to her place of work asking for favors which might tempt her mother into disobeying the authority.

Determination of a course of action.

Put security to the copiers and keep track of copies made.

Warn Jennie against giving such favors that may compromise her job.

Work place ethics.

Reference.

Success performance solution and poised for the future company. (2010). Workplace ethics.

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