- Published: October 31, 2021
- Updated: October 31, 2021
- University / College: University of Pittsburgh
- Level: Undergraduate
- Language: English
- Downloads: 19
The primary question is: What ethical theory can help George make the right decision for the diverse stakeholders? This essay argues that the most appropriate ethical theory is the stakeholder theory. This theory asserts that the corporation is “a collection of internal and external groups… [called] “stakeholders”…who are affected by and/or can affect …the firm’s objectives” (Jones, Felps, & Bigley, 2007, p.137). This theory emphasizes that management and workers should think about their actions that can impact different stakeholders. The management, for instance, cannot just focus on “agency theory” and promote their “fiduciary relationship” (Culpan & Trussel, 2005, p.64) with shareholders, without considering other stakeholder groups too. Nordberg (2008) asserted that companies have a “larger moral purpose” (p.40) and Phillips (2007) agreed that other stakeholders, aside from the stockholders, “merit consideration” (p.52). In addition, the stakeholder theory can be aligned with the moral principles of fairness, accountability, transparency, and responsibility (West, 2009, p.114).
George, though pressed for time in making the right decision, already “feels” that it is not right to take out the filters and allow the maggots to be mixed with the milkshake. This is because he also considers other stakeholders, such as the inspectors from the country health department, restaurants purchasing milkshake from Eastern Dairy, the management, and consumers. Using stakeholder ethics, George should review if it is right to just mix the maggots. From the viewpoint of consumers, it will be wrong to feed them maggot-contaminated milkshake. They trust their restaurants that the latter are serving clean and safe food. It will be wrong for them to purchase contaminated food that may affect their health. In addition, the inspectors from the country health department might also chance upon these maggots. When they find out that the shake has maggots, they might close the company and the workers could get fired. The management, though they may want to save money, will also not appreciate that the problem has been hidden from them. The company has the right to know the maggot problem so that they can identify causes and design suitable long-term solutions. The restaurants could also face legal problems when children get sick from the milkshake. Eastern Dairy’s reputation will then be tarnished, as restaurants boycott its products.
Hence, it is recommended that George will adamantly assert with Paul that it will be wrong to remove the filters, and instead, it is better to report the maggot problem to the management. They should stop production and analyze the origins of these maggots so that they can avoid future legal, business, and ethical problems. George should emphasize with his peers that this action will serve them better in the long-run because their jobs will not be at stake if they protect their company from experiencing further problems.