Morals in Action Essay Examples & Outline

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Morals in Action


Livelihood presents various opportunities to realize the required growth in all aspects. The choices made have a direct impact on the chances that the person has in the attainment of the desired goals. Choices are dependent in the moral philosophy or reasoning that the person applies when making the decisions. Business leader always draw insight from their personal moral philosophies when deciding on the course of action that they have to take in the workplace (Boylan, 2001).

Moral philosophies held by any leader in the corporate often determine their classification of behavior into either acceptable or unacceptable. This paper centers on the role of business leaders’ moral philosophies or reasoning on the decisions that they make in carrying out their daily roles. It will look at how the moral philosophies are applied in the decision-making processes. In addition to looking at the application, it will seek to explain various decisions arrived at by the leaders according to three theories. The findings discussed herein will deduce that the moral philosophies of the leaders have a significant impact on the decision making process applied. The paper will use the Enron case as a basis of explaining the various course of actions that leaders could have taken to avert and deal with the issue.

Moral virtue theory

Moral virtue theory focuses on the kind of a person that is making the decisions. It does not look at the nature or circumstances surrounding the decisions (Boylan, 2001). The focus is not primarily based on the intent of making decisions even though that is an important aspect of the theory. The primary issue is whether the person making a certain decision is displaying the required moral character. Moral character of a business leader, or any leader, is the summation of the character traits that he holds (Boylan, 2001). The decisions made by the Enron leaders prior to the scandal were immoral since there were many instances of dishonesty with the public and the rest of the stakeholder.

Duty theory

Deontological ethical theory judges the action as moral based on the adherence of the said action to a set of rules or a certain rule. The main reasoning behind this theory is that the actions of a person are bound by the rules. Some of the major contributors to the theory include Immanuel Kant who posited that an action of a person could be termed as moral if they stem from a certain duty. Therefore, the ramification of an action or decision is not what determines the morality of an issue. Under this theory, a person may argue that the actions of the leaders in Enron were immoral since they were meant to increase the worth of the company in order to justify the hefty bonuses.

Utilitarianism

As the name suggests, the theory focuses on the creation of optimal utility or reduction of negative impacts or both. The decision can be termed as moral is the consequences of taking the decision leads to the creation of the required worth for the company or organization. However, there are issues in distinguishing between actual, foreseen and intended consequences of a course of action. The intended consequences of the decisions made by the leaders at Enron were moral in that they aimed at the creation of the best company. However, the actual consequences of the decisions made them immoral since the people ended up suffering. There was also a large disparity between the foreseen and actual consequences.

In conclusion, the moral philosophy of a person actually affects the decision making process (Boylan, 2001). Moral philosophy accord the leader confidence to navigate the organization. Leaders that come from the duty school of thought will come up with decisions that are restrained to the powers accorded to them by the regulatory structure. They are duty bound to take certain course of action (Boylan, 2001). Business leaders that are bound by the utilitarianism aim at creating the best outcome for the organization. Finally, business leader that belong to the moral virtue school of thought make decisions that augur well with their moral character.

References

Boylan, M. (2001). Business ethics (1st ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.