Business Ethics

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By John Hendry

We are living in a 'bimoral' society, during which humans govern their lives through contrasting units of rules. at the one hand there are the rules linked to conventional morality. even supposing those enable a modicum of self-interest, their emphasis is on our tasks and duties to others: to regard humans in truth and with admire, to regard them rather and with out prejudice, to assist and are for them whilst wanted, and eventually, to place their wishes above their very own. however there are the foundations linked to the entrepreneurial self-interest. those additionally impose duties, yet of a way more constrained variety. Their emphasis is aggressive instead of cooperative: to improve our personal pursuits instead of to satisfy the wishes of others. either units of rules have continually been found in society yet in recent times, conventional ethical specialists have misplaced a lot in their strength and the morality of self-interest has bought a far larger social legitimacy, over a wider box of habit, than ever ahead of. the results of this is often that during many events it truly is now not in any respect obvious which set of ideas should still take priority. during this ebook, John Hendry strains the cultural and old origins of the 'bimoral' society have additionally resulted in new, extra versatile kinds of organizing, that have published people's entrepreneurial energies and considerably more advantageous the artistic capacities of industrial. operating inside of those companies, despite the fact that is fraught with ethical tensions as duties and self-interest clash and bosses are pulled in every kind of alternative instructions. coping with them effectively poses significant new demanding situations of management, and 'moral' administration, because the technical problem-solving that in the past characterised managerial paintings is more and more complete through know-how and marketplace mechanisms. the foremost function of administration turns into the political and ethical one in all making a choice on reasons and priorities, reconciling divergent pursuits, and nurturing belief in interpersonal relationships. Exploring those tensions and demanding situations, Hendry identifies new problems with modern administration and places famous matters into context. He additionally explores the demanding situations posed for a post-traditional society because it seeks to manage and govern an more and more robust and worldwide enterprise quarter.

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Extra info for Between Enterprise and Ethics: Business and Management in a Bimoral Society

Example text

The very stability that enables hierarchies to survive periods of exploitative leadership is, however, the source of another problem, that of ossification or resistance to change. This problem is familiar to students of management and business organization, for whom the word 'bureaucracy' carries much the same connotations as 'dinosaur' (the two were commonly linked in the popular management literature of the 1980s)—a form superbly suited to a stable and wholly predictable environment, but quite unable to adapt to change.

The framework of a traditional social structure, able to limit the effects of oppression and exploitation, remains but seems increasingly under threat. People expect to be looked after, but they are expected, or feel expected, to look after themselves. THE CHALLENGE FOR CONTEMPORARY SOCIETY Managing in a bimoral society will always be challenging, though it should be very rewarding too. What makes it especially challenging in the short term is that society at large has not yet found a way of expressing its bimoral character.

Most of the applications of the theory, by Douglas and others, have been based upon this simple version of the theory, but the version presented here is both closer to the original empirical evidence and better suited to issues of cultural pluralism and change, which is what we are interested in here. For further discussion see Hendry, John (1999). 'Cultural theory and contemporary management organization', Human Relations, 52, 557–77. [14] We can, of course, imagine somebody being constrained by some aspects of the classification system but not by others, or being dominated by the group in some ways but dominating in others.

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