Business ethics is an interesting branch of business theory, primarily because of the fact that they are inherently interesting in a market economy. Webster’s defines ethics as “the discipline dealing with what is good and bad or right and wrong or with moral duty and obligation.” (Unabridged, 1961.) The word derives from the Greek word meaning “moral,” a Latin word with roots in “mores” or “customs”—in other words the values held by society.
Part of business ethics is responsibility to the investor and for that reason companies with strong reputations in the field of ethical business behavior are also companies that tend to attract more investment from people that are new into the market.
The issues of business social responsibility, ethics, and environmental protection are on the agenda of modern companies.Social responsibility of business ethics and environmental protection are equally important and urgent tasks of modern business than the financial performance of the organization or the pay of top managers, because the issues of corporate responsibility are able to provide the same impact on business reputation and business value, as well as standard indicators of economic growth.
Post-structural and post-foundational currents in business ethics: Post-structural and post-foundational theories, which are often, if falsely, accused of moral relativism (‘anything goes’), ask what business ethics becomes if one abandons the notion of a final (transcendental) ground upon which businesses’ moral course of action can be based.
Largely reacting to neoclassical economics, which holds that the sole responsibility of business is to maximize its immediate bottom line subject to only the most minimal constraints of the law, advocates of corporate social responsibility argued that ethical management requires more than merely following the dictates of the law or signals of the market, the two institutions that otherwise guide business behavior.