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It is very important for every organization to engage in ethical practices in the society where it operates. This paper will therefore carry out a case study of Wounded Warriors Foundation and Cornerstone Environmental Group in order to evaluate whether the activities that the organizations engage in are ethical.
The paper will discuss the concept of ethics and how relevant it is in adding value to people, the society and the environment. It will also describe the ways in which the two organizations demonstrate ethical behavior in their operations and the various challenges that they encounter. The paper will also provide possible solutions that the organizations can implement in order to ensure that their activities are ethical.
Because of the various scandals most organizations engage in, it is very important to analyze the types of activities that organizations engage in so as to determine whether they are ethical. Organizations that practice ethical behaviors are known to create value to their society and their consumers. However, different organizations handle the issue of ethical behavior in different ways.
This difference is observed when comparing not-for-profit organizations with profit motivated organizations (Hinman, 2007). Not-for-profit organizations carry out their activities without any motivation to earn profits. Their ultimate goal is to deliver high quality services to people and the society. Such organizations are therefore less concerned about the amount of revenue that they earn from their activities.
Their key concern is to ensure that they deliver optimum services which address a specific problem affecting the members of a society. They are only concerned about how they can manage to raise sufficient funds which would enable them to continue providing quality services to the society (Martin-Brown, 1998).
They mostly rely on donations from well-wishers to enable them raise sufficient funds to keep them in operation. In addition, such organizations also invest in projects which generate revenue for them thereby enabling them to keep offering high quality services to the society that they live in. As a result, issues of unethical behaviors are not common in not-for-profit organizations.
The case of profit motivated organizations is different. Profit motivated organizations are usually driven by their urge to earn high profits. They engage in diverse activities which enable them to realize high profits. Because most organizations aim at generating profits, competition is very high among profit seeking organizations.
Some of the activities that such organizations engage in are illegal. They engage in such kinds of activities to ensure that they continue raising their profit margins (Martin-Brown, 1998). Because of the intensity of competition among the organizations that are profit motivated, issues of unethical behaviors are therefore more common.
By engaging in various types of unethical behaviors, profit motivated organizations therefore end up reducing the value of people and the society. It is therefore true that incidences of unethical behavior are more prevalent in profit motivated organizations than in not-for-profit organizations.
However though incidences of unethical behavior are more prevalent in profit motivated organizations, there are also those not-for-profit organizations which are found to participate in various forms of unethical behavior. Moreover, there are very many profit motivated organizations which engage in ethical behaviors thus creating value to their customers, employees and the societies where they operate (Gale School, n.d).
To illustrate the issue of ethical behavior in profit motivated and not-for-profit organizations, this paper will carry out a case study analysis of Wounded Warrior Foundation and Cornerstone Environmental Group.
The Wounded Warriors Foundation is a not-for-profit organization whose goal is to provide assistance to the soldiers who have been wounded while fighting with various terrorist groups in Afghanistan and Iraq. The organization mostly depends on donations in order to help the warriors to get back to their usual activities once they return home from fighting. This is an indication that this organization is sensitive to the needs of the warriors in the battle.
The organization stipulates that the soldiers need to be appreciated for the significant efforts that they apply in order to bring down incidences of terrorism (US Military, 2011). However, in its efforts to restore the warriors back to their normal lives, the organization encounters various challenges.
The amount of funding is often not sufficient to cater for all the needs of the people. In addition, there are people who are severely injured in the battle and lose their lives. Such people often leave their families behind with no one to support them.
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However, the organization cannot be able to sufficiently cater for all the needs of such families. In order for the organization to cater for needs of such people adequately, it is important for the organization to diversify the sources of its revenue (Wounded Warrior Project, 2012).
Cornerstone Environmental Group is an organization whose goal is to engage in activities that reduce the pollution to the environment. It provides environmental services as well as produces products that help reduce the amount of pollution that people and industries cause to the environment.
Though it is a private owned company, the company has proved to be very efficient in the provision of environmentally friendly services and products (EP Overviews, 2009). However, despite its dedication to providing environmentally friendly services and products, the company has been faced with a problem whereby many people do not make use of the products and the services that the company offers.
This makes it difficult for the company to achieve its goal of ensuring that the environment is free from pollution. Preservation of the environment is an ethical behavior and despite the fact that the company is driven by profits, it has shown significant commitment to reduce pollution in the environment by offering services that are affordable to people.
It is therefore true that the two organizations are committed to engaging in ethical practices in order to add value to the people and the society where they operate. These two organizations are different in that one is profit motivated while the other one is not motivated by profit. However, these two organizations have one goal in common.
Their desire is to ensure that they engage in ethical business practices in order to improve people’s standards of living. This paper will therefore analyze the various aspects of ethical behaviors in the two organizations and the values that they create to the employees, customers and the societies where they operate. It will therefore illustrate whether there is any difference in the adoption of ethical organizational practices between the two organizations.
In order for an organization to be regarded as ethical in its practices, it needs to demonstrate actions that can be easily traced in ethical theories. In order for an activity that an organization engages in to be treated as ethical, there are certain features that should be observed from it (Hinman, 2007).
In a situation where an organization is unable to choose a strategy to implement, it should ensure that it selects the alternative which has more positives than negatives.
The activities that an organization engages in should also be capable of adding value to people and their society. The activities should also satisfy the interests of the people in terms of their feelings, power and knowledge. An organization should also ensure that the activities that it engages in are recognized by law.
There are also instances whereby an organization may face a dilemma regarding which projects to implement. In this perspective, an organization should implement a project that adds more value to the society and one that does not impact negatively in a society (Martin-Brown, 1998). Ethical theories should therefore guide organizations on the best practices that they should engage in depending on the value that they add to the society.
Wounded Warrior Foundation has demonstrated ethical organizational behaviors in the activities that it engages in. Since its goal is to ensure that the military men who have been involved in wars in Iraq and Afghanistan resume their normal lives, it has focused on adding value to human life by ensuring that no person is left to suffer after engaging in activities that are meant to protect the interests of other people.
The organization therefore believes that the soldiers should be allowed to live normal lives after they come back from the wars (US Military, 2011). In addition, soldiers should be provided with the relevant care which would enable them to recover from the injuries that they get from the fights with terrorists.
There are various ways in which the Wounded Warriors Foundation has ensured that soldiers and their families are able to live positive lives after the soldiers return from the wars. The Wounded Warrior Foundation has embarked on a platform aimed at overcoming the stress and financial need that may result when a soldier gets injured in the war.
The organization ensures that when a soldier gets an injury in the war, the family of the injured soldier is provided with a grant of $2,500. The family of such a person can also claim for more funds in case they feel that the funds donated are not enough to cater for their needs (USMilitary, 2011).
The program is also dedicated to providing the injured soldiers with financial assistance which would cater for their entire rehabilitation process. In addition, the unexpected expenses of the family of such a person are also catered for. The organization is also embarking on a platform whereby it is increasing the visibility of its services so that more families can become aware of the program and the benefits that it offers to injured soldiers.
From the activities that the foundation undertakes, it is evident that the organization has a passion for the people who have suffered injuries while trying to protect the interests of their nation. The organization understands the hardships that soldiers encounter while in the battle field.
As a result, the organization mobilizes funds from various donors and projects in order to ensure that it is able to provide the soldiers with all their needs when they get injuries while in the battle field. The organization does not discriminate and therefore offers to cater for all the needs of those people who have incurred major injuries and their families.
Cornerstone Environmental Group is committed to providing environmental services and products to individuals and organizations in order to ensure that pollution to the environment is minimized. It does this in order to ensure that the environment remains valuable to people today and to the future generations.
Despite the fact that the organization is privately owned, it engages in innovative production processes which are very effective in terms of reducing pollution to the environment. The focus of this organization therefore is to realize a sustainable environment that is free from pollution (Showtimes Magazine, 2012).
There are various ways in which Cornerstone Environmental Group engages in ethical business practices. One of the ways in which it has shown ethical behavior is by introducing BioCNG fuel which acts as an alternative to the fuel that is used by vehicles today.
The gas produced by this company is natural thereby making it friendly to the environment. The company also provides the fuel at prices that are affordable by people in order to attract them to use the gas and refrain from using petroleum products which are well known for polluting the environment.
The company has shown its determination to reduce pollution to the environment by ensuring that it has the capacity to produce large amounts of the gas that would cater for high demand. This is demonstrated by the way in which the company has been able to produce an amount CNG that is equivalent to 250 gallons of gasoline every day (EP Overviews, 2009).
The methane gas produced by this company is harnessed from waste water. It is therefore observed that the process is beneficial into ways. The water gets purified while at the same time natural gas is given out. However, not many people use natural gas to drive their vehicles.
This is because they are not aware of the benefits that are associated with natural gas. In addition, the production of fossil fuels is still being carried out such that people find no reason to use natural gas (Cornerstone Environmenal Group, 2012). In order for people to use natural gas, they would need to acquire other vehicles and this is one thing that many people are not willing to do. The number of people who use natural gas is therefore not significant.
Since the Wounded Warriors Foundation relies on donations from people, the organization lacks sufficient funds to enable it cater for needs of the soldiers adequately. The activities of this organization are aimed at ensuring that soldiers benefit from the services of the organization when they get any form of injuries.
To address this issue, the best alternative would be to make the people who serve in the military to make contributions to the organization so that in case of injuries, the organization can be able to gather sufficient funds that would cater for their needs adequately (Baby Boomer Gold, 2012). However, this alternative might not be accepted because the organization is assumed to be a not-for-profit organization.
In the case of Cornerstone Environmental Group, it is not possible for the organization to convince people to refrain from using petroleum products to power their vehicles because. This is because the production of petroleum products is still ongoing and people would not be willing to do away with their current vehicles in order to acquire the vehicles that use natural gas.
The only alternative in this case would be for the company to engage in the production of gases that would substitute gasoline (Bloomberg, 2012). However, this form of technology is not yet available and the company should remain focused to the production of natural gas.
Both Wounded Warriors Foundation and Cornerstone Environmental Group face problems in their day to day operations. To address these challenges, there are various measures that they should adopt. For example, the Wounded Warriors Foundation suffers from financial constraints because it depends on the donations from people.
In addition, not many people are aware of the services that the organization provides. To overcome these constraints, the company should embark on a program aimed at notifying people of the benefits that the organization provides to the soldiers. This would encourage many people to enroll in the program (Wounded Warrior Project, 2012). In addition, the company should engage in campaigns and fundraising programs in order to raise sufficient funds that would enable it to cater for the overall needs of the injured soldiers and their families.
In the case of Cornerstone Environmental Group, the organization should ensure that it embarks on a platform aimed at notifying the public on the importance of protecting their environment from pollution. It should also ensure that it participates in activities that demonstrate to the public the various ways in which they can protect their environment (Bloomberg, 2012). This way, people will be able to understand the importance of environmental conservation.
Conclusions and Recommendations
From the analysis therefore, it is true that Wounded Warriors Foundation and Cornerstone Environmental Group are two ethical organizations whose ultimate goal is to add value to the people and societies where they operate. Though the two companies are different in such a manner that one is profit motivated and the other is a non-profit organization, the two organizations have shown that it is possible for any organization to practice ethical business practices thereby adding value to people and the society.
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Hinman, L. M. (2007). Ethics: A Pluralistic Approach to Moral Theory. New York: Cengage Learning.
Martin-Brown, J. (1998). Ethics and Values: A Global Perspective. Michigan: World Bank.
Showtimes Magazine. (2012). Cornerstone Environmental Group Delivers BioCNG. Web.
US Military. (2011). Wounded Warrior Foundation Aids Troops. Web.
Wounded Warrior Project. (2012). Programs. Web.