From the social point of view, business exists to supply goods and services to the people. From the individual point of view, the primary objective of a business firm is to earn profit. Business ethics are moral principles that guide the way a business behaves. The same principles that determine an individual”s actions also apply to business.
One may expect that the individual goals of the firm would not be in conflict with the objectives of society. However, business enterprises are run by human beings whose decisions and actions may not always be in accordance with the expectations of society. An enterprise may be good in terms of economic performance (like revenue, costs and profits) but poor in terms of social performance like supplying products of reasonable quality and at reasonable prices.
Ground Rules of Ethics
The following are some of the universal virtues which every human being should imbibe, develop and practice to be ethical in life:
(a) Be trustworthy
(b) Have respect for others
(c) Own responsibility
(d) Be fair in dealings
(e) Be caring towards well being of others
(f) Prove to be a good citizen — through civil virtues and duties