Nike is a company with a worldwide presence. The company, according to Forbes has a market value of over $86 billion as of May 2015 and stands to be 18th in the world’s most valuable brands (Forbes.com, n.d.). Nike’s most footwear products are majorly designed for a specific athletic use, for example for football, running, volleyball, cricket, just to name a few. However, a significant percentage of these footwear products are usually worn for leisure or casual purposes.
In the recent past, Nike has faced its fair share of the ethical dilemma. These ethical predicaments arise when the organization’s behavior or alternative choices are undesirable to the society because of their harmful consequences. Some of the major ethical issues that Nike has faced include very low wages and overtime for their workers in countries like Indonesia, Vietnam, and China under a subcontract (Nike Case Study, n.d.). Other challenges are: the issue is the sweatshop problem and child labor, poor and squalid working conditions, issues of forced labor, and the challenge of environmental harm that is done to the society. The government plays a major role in these issues that Nike face. However, since government laws and regulations are differing from country to country, it tends to be difficult for manufacturing multinational corporations to operate (Business Ethics, n.d.). These laws and regulation may involve consumer protection, employment, information and labeling, the safety of employees, wages and salaries.
The ethical perspectives that are used to determine the unethical behavior of Nike are: deontology ethics which argue that if people want to have moral behaviors then they need to act according to the duty, utilitarianism approach which is majors on selecting one alternative which provides the greatest satisfaction to all consumers, and lastly ethical egoism where a moral agent tends to do what they believe is in their personal interest (Nike Case Study, n.d.). Ethical factors need to be considered by the management of Nike in accordance with the ethic perspectives. Such factors are having a code of ethics in the company, the executive leading by example, establishing strong ethical structures, and whistle-blowing of unethical members of the company.
Business Ethics [Web log post]. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/news/business-ethics/
Forbes.com. (n.d.). The world's most valuable brands. Retrieved July 26, 2015, from http://www.forbes.com/companies/nike/
Nike Case Study | Ethics [Web log post]. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://professional-ethics-articles.blogspot.com/2012/09/nike-case-study.html