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Thursday, June 12, 2014

Does Morality Matter in Managing Businesses?

By Victor Want
Originally published October 23, 2013

Here are two excerpts:

There is another way of looking at morality.  Instead of thinking of companies as entities, which is what the questions above do, let’s think of companies as collections of individuals.  When we do that, we see morality in a different way: because individuals are motivated by moral purpose.


His central idea is that the primary responsibility of any executive is to define the organization’s purpose and instill loyalty, so that managers work for the organization’s good rather than for their own advancement. You can only achieve this kind of loyalty if you keep your employees satisfied, rather than viewing them simply as economic production inputs. In Barnard’s own words, “The morality that underlies enduring cooperation is multidimensional.”  He discusses how satisfying multiple moral codes, like responsibilities to customers and shareholders, is the key for employees to gain more senior roles. This often means reconciling competing obligations.

The entire article is here.