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Business Ethics: A Case Study Approach

ISBN: 978-0-470-45067-3
192 pages
May 2009
Business Ethics: A Case Study Approach (0470450673) cover image


An important guide for senior management on structuring an organization to promote ethical behavior and enhance performance

Designed for senior leaders of organizations–boards of directors; C-level executives; trustees; managing partners; government officials; and anyone tasked with a duty–Business Ethics: A Case Study Approach provides readers with an understanding of the human elements that drive ethical and unethical behavior and how to recognize indicators–both bad and good–of an organization's ethical make-up. Topics featured include: what drives individual decision making; how groups and environments influence decision making; the role of leadership; and much more.

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Table of Contents



CHAPTER 1 Introduction.


Case Study: A CFO’s Dilemma.

CHAPTER 2 Why Are Ethics Critical?

What Is the Objective?

The Research.

Stakeholder Approach.

All Animals Are Equal, but ...

A Two-Way Street.

Uncle Sam.

Toward a Workable Model.

CHAPTER 3 Why ‘‘Business’’ Ethics Is Not Just about Corporations.

Case Study: The Duke University Lacrosse Scandal.

20/20 Hindsight.

The Burden of Expectations.

Case Study: The United Way.

A Broad Impact.

CHAPTER 4 A Historical Review.

The Ancient World.

Greek Citizens’ Code.

Military Codes.

Cardinal Virtues and Vices.

Business Ethics in Times Past.


Case Study: Saint Thomas Aquinas.

Case Study: Arthur Andersen.

The Nature of Man.

CHAPTER 5 Why Do People Behave Badly?

Moral Development.

Fraud Triangle.


Hierarchy of Needs.

Case Study: Walt Pavlo.

There but for the Grace of God.

Broken Windows.

Rending Moral Fabric.

CHAPTER 6 Work Environment and Group Dynamics.

Social Animals.

Relative Ethics.

Social Control Theory.

Case Study: The Stanford Prison Experiment.

Elements of Social Bonding.

Case Study: The Milgram Experiment.

Power, Authority, and Proximity.

Positive Peer Pressure.

CHAPTER 7 Leadership.

Tone at the Top.


Case Study: Václav Havel.

Outside Perspectives.

Case Study: The Smithsonian Institution.

Leadership Bonding.

CHAPTER 8 The Common Element—Trust.

Prisoners’ Dilemma.


The Cost of Trust.

Case Study: The Tylenol Poisonings.

A Well of Goodwill.

Case Study: Firestone–Ford Tire Recalls.

Two Approaches.

CHAPTER 9 Building an Army of Davids.

Herding Cats.

1 Samuel 17.

Breaking the Chains.

Basic Principles.


Case Study: Jordan’s Furniture.

Back to Maslow.

Moral Hazard.

Causes and Culture.

CHAPTER 10 The Positive Power of Peer Pressure.

The Gentleman at Dinner.


I Fly SWA.




In the Trenches.

Why Are We Doing This?

The Whole Picture.

CHAPTER 11 How to Develop Leadership.


Case Study: Whirlpool and Leadership Development.

Investing in the Future.

Emerging Leaders.

A Bias.

CHAPTER 12 The Logic of William of Ockham.

Law of Parsimony.

Is It the Means or the Ends?

The Whole View.

All Organizations Are Businesses.

Case Study: University versus Nation.

All about Me.

Case Study: Charles Ponzi and His Scheme.

Enjoying the Kool-Aid.

CEO and Trust.

Feeding the Wolf.


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Author Information

STEPHEN K. HENN is President of SmartPros Legal & Ethics, Ltd. He is an experienced consultant, executive, and attorney with over fifteen years as a pioneer and leader in legal and ethics training for lawyers and executives. He has been an instructor for several live and Web-based legal and ethics programs. Prior to SmartPros Legal & Ethics, Henn was president and CEO of Cognistar Interactive Corporation, a leader in Web-based continuing legal education and executive ethics and compliance training.

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"Written for busines leaders, policymakers and anyone "tasked with a duty", this book examines the key elements of ethical and unethical business behaviors and outlines some of the psychological factors that may influence decision-making." (Book News, August 2009)
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Business Ethics: A Case Study Approach (US $60.00)

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