Assignment: Ethical Decisions Scenario Analysis Melissa McClellan Appendix C Ethical Decisions Scenario Analysis For each of the following scenarios answer the questions and explain whether your answers fit with traditional or modern ethical thinking. After you have finished responding to the scenarios, discuss whether you generally make ethical decisions using a traditional or a modern ethical model. Provide an example using an experience you have had in your daily life. | |Scenario One | |You are a manager at your current company. You receive a call requesting a character reference for an employee you know to be | |unreliable and dishonest but who has not broken any rule directly. | |a. What should you tell the prospective employer? | |b. What type of information would you tell the prospective employer? | |c. How would what you share be to your advantage or disadvantage? | | | | |Response to Questions | | | |a) As manager of this employee, I would have to tell the prospective employer only what is factual and not elaborate on my | |suspicions.
Meaning that I could not state my personal opinion about the employee being unreliable and dishonest if no rules were | |broken and the employee was never reprimanded for bad behaviors. | |b) Since this is a character reference then only character type information may be given. In this case the character reference may | |include what good qualities the employee has, a good team worker, learns quickly, etc. If there were no good characteristics, then a| |polite no thank you would have to do. |c) The advantages come in the form of not being sued by anyone for badmouthing the employee and maybe the employee will actually get | |the other job, therefore not your problem anymore. This is really a damn if I do or do not situation and has to be handled in a | |competent manner. | |The only disadvantage I can see with this situation is not being able to warn the prospective employer about the bad characteristics | |of this employee but without any reprimands or facts to back up the words it is not an option. | | | | | | | | | | | | | | |
Scenario Two | | | |Mike is currently enrolled in a challenging course. His personal life is also unusually complicated by his seriously ill mother who | |lives out of state. Mike receives an e-mail from an individual who has taken this course previously and whom Mike knows did | |reasonably well in it. In the e-mail, the individual offers Mike, for a fee, all the course assignments, discussion question | |responses, and Checkpoint answers. | |a. How should Mike reply to his friend? | |b. What are the positive and negative consequences of accepting this offer? | |c. What are the positive and negative consequences of refusing this offer? | | | | |Response to Questions | | | |a) Ethically, it would be wrong for Mike to accept his friends offer and he should decline the offer with a prompt thank you but no | |thanks. | |b) The positive consequences are obsolete if Mike has a conscience or a sense of right and wrong. The negative perhaps come in | |greater numbers by accepting his friends offer. First, Mike would not learn much from his course and he would not gain any knowledge | |about course material.
Second, school policy indicates that we should do our own work and there is a chance Mike would plagiarize or| |be expelled from school for using another’s work. | |c) The positive consequences of refusing his friends offer comes in the form of self-satisfaction and knowing he accomplished his | |work even though other areas of life are tough. In addition, Mike can be spared any bad situations with the school if he were caught| |using another’s work. The negative consequences for Mike may be minimal after refusing his friends help if he deals with each of his| |problems one-step and day at a time. Mike may have to take a temporary break from school to deal with other things but that is only | |a sacrifice that is required in life to see positive outcomes. | | | | |Scenario Three | | | |
You are a politician involved in a hotly contested race to retain your seat on the city commission. The political issues are | |important to you, but allegations have been raised that your opponent is leaving his wife for a younger woman. These allegations are | |unproven. Your campaign advisors have urged you to release this information to help your campaign. | |a. What moral and ethical considerations come into play when making this decision? | |b. What are the positive and negative consequences of using the information? | |c. What are the positive and negative consequences of not using the information? | | | | | | |Response to Questions | | | |a) The moral and ethical considerations center on what is right and what is wrong when it comes to serving those that vote for me as | |a politician. If the political issues are important to me then I would want to run the race as legitimate as possible. Ethically it | |would be wrong to exploit the other opponent in such a way that says I would stoop to any level to maintain my seat on the city | |commission. | |b) I really don’t see any positive consequence if I use the derogatory information because I will know what I did was wrong. The | |negative consequences would be various.
Using the information could affect any respect my staff had for me, it could backfire and | |cause me to lose the race, and I would know what I did was wrong and it would play into future decisions. | |c) I can only relate the positive consequences of not using the information as the negative are obsolete. Sure, I could lose the | |race to my opponent by not using the information but that is not really a negative consequence because I know I did things right and | |morally. The positives know I ran the race honestly without hard balling anyone and possibly ruining my own credibility. This sort | |of behavior can follow an individual for the rest of their career so it is always better to do things honestly. | Reflection Question: Discuss whether you generally make ethical decisions using a traditional or a modern ethical model.
Provide an example using an experience you have had in your daily life. I truly think I am more of a traditional type decision maker where treating others with respect and honesty is most important for good outcomes. I also feel some of the modern way of thinking is helpful especially when dealing with work issues. My ethical decisions are made based on what I feel is right and wrong, which is something that has always been a strong force within me. An example of an experience I have had is recent and is something I have always taught my child. My son and I were visiting the park a few weeks ago and we found a wallet with everything intact including money.
My first instinct was to look in the wallet for some sort of identification (possibly a phone number) and contact the owner. This information was available so I used my cell to call the individual and they came right down to pick the wallet up. They were so relieved that someone would actually call and return their property. I simply replied that I hoped if it were my wallet that the same would happen for me because that is the right thing to do. Not only did I make someone’s day better but I also set a very good visual example for my two-year-old son. While he may not understand what I did, he will have an example of respect and honesty which are two values and ethics I want to instill in him.
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