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Standards of business conduct are important for each company that focuses on meeting customers’ interests and on creating a positive and ethical atmosphere in the organization according to the principles of respect, accountability, and integrity. Starbucks and McDonalds are among those leaders in the business world and market, which pays much attention to supporting their reputations as ethical and sustainable companies. In this context, it is important to focus on comparing the specific standards of business conduct typical for such companies as Starbucks and McDonalds.
Strengths of Both Standards of Business Conduct
Both standards of business conduct include all the important information and guidelines on the relationships between employees, customers and employees, and employees and suppliers. The code used in Starbucks is effective because much attention is paid to explaining the principles of quality, equal opportunity, and diversity followed in the organization. Furthermore, large sections describe the principles according to which business partnerships need to be organized, and conflicts of interests need to be resolved. One more strength observed while analyzing the code is the focus on environmental sustainability (Starbucks, 2011, p. 4). In addition, the detailed information is provided on whom to contact in order to resolve ethical questions.
Standards mentioned in the McDonalds’s document are effective in terms of describing the aspects of the workplace relationships, as it is in the standards for Starbucks, and in terms of providing the detailed descriptions of core values and such principles as accountability, integrity, respect, and diversity. These sections are organized in the document more effectively in comparison with the information proposed in the standards for Starbucks. McDonald’s also focuses on discussing the regulations for protecting confidential information and addressing intellectual property rights (McDonald’s, 2011, p. 4). In addition, possible cases of conflicts of interest are described in detail to prevent these situations during the work.
Weaknesses of Both Standards of Business Conduct
In spite of being appropriately organized, the standards of business conduct have some weaknesses. Thus, the document for Starbucks lacks a clear discussion of core values and principles followed in the organization when the document for McDonald’s lacks focusing on environmental sustainability. Although the nature of workplace relations is described in detail in both codes, the standards lack the concrete information on punishments and aspects of compliance (McDonald’s, 2011; Starbucks, 2011). Furthermore, more attention can be paid to discussing the ethical relations with suppliers in both codes in addition to the description of expected relations with customers and other stakeholders.
Having analyzed the standards of business conduct for both Starbucks and McDonalds, it is possible to state that the organization of the document for McDonald’s is more appropriate to provide effective guidelines for stakeholders on the company’s vision and principles. Thus, the document for Starbucks only refers to some principles and values, but they are not discussed in the text. Although the code of ethics and conduct for McDonald’s also needs some improvement, it can be discussed as more effective in comparison with the other document because the standards for Starbucks do not include the clear reference to the necessity of compliance and possible punishment measures in different cases.
It is an important aspect because a code of business ethics can be effective only when the punishment measures are formulated in detail and followed strictly as a result of monitoring. Furthermore, to guarantee compliance with standards, it is necessary to focus on ethical training.
McDonalds. (2011). Standards of business conduct. Web.
Starbucks. (2011). Business ethics and compliance: Standards of business conduct. Web.