In the modern day business landscape, the words 'morals' and 'ethics' have started being highlighted more often than ever before. This is down to a number of reasons. First of all, businesses, especially those operating on a large scale, cannot afford to overlook other parties, i.e. stakeholders. Businesses today understand very well that failing to take into context the implications of their actions can ruin a business's image very quickly. However, although morals and ethics are common words, there is a huge difference between the two terms.
Morals are values that people associate with a particular system of beliefs, i.e. political system. Ethics, on the other hand, is the way business owners and managers put these morals into play, that is, how the morals are applied. Morals stem from an individual's decision making and how the individual believes things should work. Ethics, on the other hand, are rules set by society. For this reason, morals are defined as being individualwhile ethics is defined as being social. People have certain morals because they believe it is right. On the other hand, ethics is the product of a society's view.
Morals and ethics have become such a hot topic these days only due to the fact that all companies, no matter how large or small, face certain moral and ethical issues that must be dealt with. Failure to do so can result in both personal dissatisfaction (morals), and negative feedback from society (ethics). Moreover, frominternational business's standpoint, failure to recognize morals and ethics can make seriously damage that particular business's reputation. For instance, multinationals have to recognize the ethics and morals when working in foreign countries. This can include keeping a tab on pollution or even safeguarding worker's rights that might not otherwise be a requirement. In the end, both morals and values are wholly important for businesses. Morals are vital to a company's mission statement, whereas ethics is important from a legal viewpoint.
What Are the Differences Between Ethical Issues & Moral Issues in Business?. (n.d.). Small Business. Retrieved May 19, 2014, from http://smallbusiness.chron.com/differences-between-ethical-issues-moral-issues-business-48134.html