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Managers within organizations often face situations involving ethical dilemmas. Ethical dilemma, in this case, can be defined as the apparent conflicts which may occur as a result of running one’s business between the moral imperatives in which one to obey would eventually lead to transgressing one another. Under business ethics, this is a form of art which is said to examine the ethical principles or even the moral problems which might tend to occur as a result of running the business and hence there is the need to try and solve such problems so that the business can be in a position to run well. Many businesses are said to be prone to such ethical problems and a good example is a case above whereby this manager is faced with the ethical problem of one of his employees who has approached him complaining that she is HIV positive and would like assistance from the manager. So you find that when such ethical problems occur when running the business, there are management issues that should be done to ensure that the employee does not lose his job or even the company does not experience fewer customers coming into your business. So through the paper, I will try to see some of the ethical management issues which the manager should take when faced with such a dilemma. (Adelman, 2000).
How to resolve the situation
HIV is one of the killers is one of the killer diseases which not everyone would love to be contracted with the disease. So under business ethics, employees have their rights which the organization in this case should follow. So with the case of this employee, you see this is a food restaurant whereby the health will matter as far as the running of the restaurant is concerned. Restaurants are one of the places whereby cleanliness and health issues should be maintained so that the restaurant can be in a position to get more profits as a result of increased customers coming to eat at your restaurant. So with the case of the employee who is HIV positive, I tend to think that it would be quite ethical if work is rescheduled once again and this particular chef is taken to another department which will not require handling of people’s food. This is not a way of demoting the head chef but in this case, can be made the head of another department say the storage department whereby she will not be involved with handling people’s food.
This is because as we all know, HIV is one of the killer diseases and yet there is no known medicine for HIV. So when this particular chef is left to continue handling people’s food, it will be risking people and not many customers will be in a position to come to your food palace since they are fearing been contradicted with HIV. So when this particular chef is transferred into another department, it will be better for him and the restaurant as well. This is one of the major conflicts which many managers have faced when they realize that one of their employees is suffering from HIV. But in all, these are people which we should not neglect in the many organizations they work in. They should not be fired simply because they are suffering from HIV but they need to be given attention to feel that they are part of us.
But you tend to find that when some managers have been approached by their employees as a result of suffering from HIV, some take the initiative of firing them. Anyone can suffer from HIV hence the need to treat these people as we would like to be treated. They should not be neglected, fired, or even demoted simply because they are sick but it’s quite ethical that the business, in this case, should help this particular person to work and render her services as she has been rendering when she was healthy. So I tend to think that for the sake of business losing customers when they hear that this particular chef is sick, I tend to think that it’s quite ethical if this head chef is transferred into another department and made head of that particular department. This is because when customers will hear that this particular chef is sick, it’s normal that they will not come into your restaurant hence lead to decreased profits. (Arlow, 2000).
Human resource management
HR is one of the departments in many organizations and their role is to deal with the worker’s recruitments, workers working conditions among other activities which are concerned with the workers. You find that the ethics of HR will revolve around the ethical issues which usually arise around the employer and the employment relationship and a good example to explain this case is the rights and duties which are said to be owed by the employee and the employer respectively. People tend to be discriminated against a lot in their areas of work and a good example to explain this scenario is the case above of the HIV-positive chef. You find that the notion that this is simply a restaurant can lead to the definite sacking of this particular employee of which it is quite not ethical to sack this person simply because he is sick. Workers should never be discriminated and it’s not only in the case of sickness but there are also other forms of discrimination which may include gender, race, ethnicity, age among other forms of discrimination.
So in this case, it is the role of HR to ensure that his workers are not discriminated against at all. So for HR to be quite effective in this case the HR should be in a position to ensure that workers’ rights have been protected and no particular worker should be discriminated against simply because he/she is sick. Now for the case of this HIV-positive chief chef, it’s the role of the HR department to ensure that this particular work is not fired simply because he is sick. He should ensure that the business ethics have been observed through transferring this particular employee into another department. When running the organization, there are other ethical dilemmas which in this case can not be accepted by the HR department, and a good example to explain this is when a particular worker has been caught up stealing. It is according to business ethics that workers have to stay as per the code of conduct of the business.
This is because, in any organization, there are set rules and regulations in which they are supposed to set the relationship between the workers, the relationship between the employer and the employees as far the business property is concerned. When such an employee is caught deviating from these behaviors, then as per the business ethics, HR in this case is supposed to handle this particular employee as per the set rules. Theft in the business is an immoral behavior that might lead to work termination by this employee. So, in this case, HR should be in a position to differentiate the behaviors which might require thorough action like sacking the employee if going against the business rules and regulations. But with the case of HIV, as long as this particular person feels healthy and can work, then she should not be terminated but the HR should ensure that attention is given to the employee. (Bommer, 2001).
The privacy should also be maintained between the employee and the employer. This will apply in the case above when the chef told the manager about his HIV status. So this particular manager should ensure that privacy between the employee and employee is maintained but not to go revealing the secrets of the employee. It’s quite ethical to ensure that such matters are kept sealed as per the requests of the employer. This has happened in so many businesses when worker’s secrets have been revealed hence leading to poor working conditions of the employees. You will find that when such matters have been revealed to the rest of the employees, this person will not be in a position to work well as expected but in this case, due to the shame she will receive from the other workers will lead to poor working conditions. So it’s quite ethical for HR to ensure that the workers’ secrets have been kept. (Bommer, 2001).
You also find that when employees are HIV positive in an organization, people tend to look down upon them and this is one of the bad behaviors and it’s not ethical at all. These are people who need our attention most but now if we happen to ignore them, they will feel neglected and some end up committing suicide. So HR should ensure that good working conditions are given to such people and ensure that no employee should be caught up misusing the HIV-positive victims. It is a challenge to many HR in many organizations who experience such cases. It may seem hard to cope with as far as the management of the business is concerned especially working in a restaurant since in restaurants; this is one of the places whereby health standards should be maintained since it deals with people’s food. It may be hard to understand but business ethics puts it clear that workers should not be fired or even demoted simply because their health is not good. This is because if we neglect these people, it will mean that we will have so many people lying idle simply because they are not in a position to get good jobs as a result of their HIV status.
HR in this case should ensure that the working conditions of its employees are good and not overwork them. IF they have the potentials and qualities of been promoted, then they should be promoted but not fired at all. Workers should also be given a good package as per the work in which they do. It is the work of HR to ensure that workers get good wages but not to take advantage of the situation of the workers simply because they are sick. They should get their salary as per the terms and conditions of business ethics as agreed upon when this worker was employed. (Barnett, 2004).
Decision-making can be defined as the outcome of a mental process that will later lead to the selection of a course of action among so many alternatives. In such a decision-making process, human performance is expected hence people should be involved in speaking their minds on particular management issues. For the case above, all workers should be involved in making the various business decisions that will lead to the success of the company. You tend to find that many people are neglected from airing their decisions simply because they are failures. For the case of this chef, she might be looked down upon as not able to make good decisions simply because she is a failure. But her decision is very much important in this case. Workers are supposed to make their own decisions no matter how bad and it’s the management to determine whether to adapt this particular decision or not.
The decision is very much important in any organization since it’s through the many decisions which are made by the workers that the organization in this case can be in a position to record a change when running the restaurant. The worker might be ineffective but can help in making decisions on how to run the restaurant well. So in this case, workers should not be discriminated against but should be allowed to make their own decisions. (Beauchamp, 2002).
Business ethics is very much important in any business. This is because it is through business ethics that the worker’s terms of working can be defined well. When operating the many businesses we work in, there are so many ethical dilemmas that tend to occur when running the business. Some of the ethical dilemmas can be resolved by the management of the organization through retaining the employees while others may lead to work termination by the employee.
Adelman, H. (2000): Morality and ethics in organizational administration. Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 10(9).
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Arlow, P. (2000): Incorporating ethics in to the business curriculum. Teaching Philosophy, Vol. 10(1).
Barnett, J. (2004): managers, values and executive decisions. Journal of business ethics, Vol. 8(10).
Beauchamp, T. (2002): Ethical theory and business. Englewood Cliffs. NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Bommer, M. (2001): A behavioral model of ethical and unethical decision making. Journal of business ethics, Vol. 6(4).