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Implementing Values And Ethics In Globalized Business

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Implementing Values and Ethics in Globalized Business

Michael Cavalea

University of Phoenix


Today's global business world requires companies to take into account its peoples values and to follow through with ethically sound practices. Companies form their organizational values in light of what its employees' value. From a company's organizational values come a universal code of conduct which is tried and revised until it results in successfully resolving situations demonstrating solid ethics.

Implementing Values and Ethics in Globalized Business

Today's business world is much different from the business world of the early years in our country as well as the world. In the early years, little regard was given for employees: children worked long hours, women worked in unsafe conditions and the like. Today however, the world can see a drastic change: children under 18 years old can only work so many hours a week, there are health and safety codes in every company. And these are just the tip of the iceberg of pro-employee changes that have happened over the last 100 years. People use words like values and ethics to describe the policies and the actions of companies in how they treat their employees, especially globally.

Personal Values

Personal values, just like cultural values, need to be considered when a company is forming its policies. Personal values are linked closely to cultural values and need to be viewed as such by a company. Generally, if a company is compliant with its employees' cultural values, so also it will be with its employees' personal values. While personal values are just that personal, many personal values are shared in a way that cultural values are shared.

Companies make efforts to be sensitive to people's personal values via surveys and comment cards. They also show personal value sensitivity by giving management freedom to make exceptions for their own group of employees as it gets to know each employee personally. Companies now strive to get to know their employees.

Cultural Values

Cultural values are one of the values that need to be considered by a company drafting or changing its policies. The values that employees hold, their group values are where companies can have problems with nowadays, especially when expanding globally. Companies need to take into account people's values when forming policies and working hours, it can be a group of people's religious beliefs whether they dictate for them to go to church on Sunday morning or not to eat while the sun is up for a whole month. Cultural values cannot be overlooked in Harris' article (2007) he writes about a Chinese man being patient at a conference with Americans. Eventually he becomes more aggressive to be heard and comically lets everyone know about his predicament. "Li stood up anyway, insisting to be heard. "I was being a Chinese gentleman, waiting my turn,.....I decided to be the American gentleman and be more aggressive."" Here, the people running the conference could have seen that there was a Chinese man patiently waiting to speak, and had given him the floor, since he did not feel comfortable taking it like everyone else present.

A company can try to establish itself in a culture it is unfamiliar with, but without taking the cultural values of its people into account, the company will inevitably have serious problems. Companies need to do research and have a good understanding of each new culture the companies are going to be working with. Then the companies keep what they have learned about each culture in mind as they form policies.

Organizational Values

Organizational values are obviously one of the values that need to be considered by a company when forming its policies. Organizational values are the starting point, and these are amended to work with the cultural and personal values of its employees. Companies generally have a keynote which sets in motion the rest of its values and which way they go in relation to benefit of its employees. Some company's mission statement almost seems to include creating a good working environment for its employees; while others do enough just to keep their employees.

Organizational values are constantly being checked and balanced in the light of its employees' cultural values and personal values. It is possible for companies to keep their organizational values when moving into a new global market. Generally, unless if a company's core values are in dispute with an entire culture, its organizational values and the people's values can mesh well and all can be productive and generally happy. Organizational values are in a constant give and take with the cultural and personal values of its employees. If the company does not give some to the cultural and personal values end, it will not mesh with its employees. However, if it does not take some, the company can easily lose its identity and not be itself. There is a great deal of gray area in building



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