Modern businesses are given a bad reputation by many people out there. An alarming amount of people believe all businesses to be completely unethical. As if they’re all ruthless entities that only care about filling their pockets with sweet, sweet cash. If that means destroying some forests to make way for new offices, so be it. If that means bankrupting families to order to get get debts paid, well, that’s just business.
Of course, this isn’t quite true. It wouldn’t be fair to tar all businesses with the same brush. But it is true that many businesses out there are doing a lot of damage. If you own a business, no matter how small, there are things you can do to help the world. It’s important to remember this. Take a look at these common ethical issues that are affecting many businesses today.
Something that’s been affecting businesses for a while now is the presidential race. Of course, this doesn’t affect businesses all the time. Presidential campaigns only run every three or four years, after all! But when campaigns are active, businesses can be faced with a tough decision. And with the 2016 presidential race about to enter full swing, this issue couldn’t be more timely.
But, as you may know, businesses as corporations cannot contribute directly to any candidate. So how do corporations get around this? They use corporate sponsored political action committees. You may have heard them referred to as PACs in the media. This is where businesses will face an ethical problem. PACs are one of the leading problems that causing a need for campaign funding reform. The candidate most concerned with ethics doesn’t even accept super PACs. So while PACs may sound like a good way to fund a candidate you like, you may want to consider non-monetary forms of support.
Now let’s take a look at an issue that’s affecting businesses every year. Constantly, in fact. One of the biggest problems facing businesses today is concern for the environment. With no sane person denying climate change, not taking steps to help the environment is now seen as a bad business decision. How do businesses balance the need for expansion with the need to be environmentally-friendly?
There are many ways in which your business can take steps to help the environment. It doesn’t matter what field you’re in. Let’s look at agriculture, for example. Agriculture businesses work directly with the land, so there’s a lot of pressure on them to do as little damage as possible. Thankfully, several advances are being made in this area. More efficient irrigation systems are available to farmers, which will help reduce water consumption. As you may have heard, water usage is one of the biggest concerns when it comes to the environment!
For businesses that make their home in the office, it’s all about reducing other forms of waste. Recycling is being enforced in many cities as a matter of law, but not all businesses are legally compelled to recycle. But with 90% of waste in your average office classed as recyclable, it’s irresponsible to neglect recycling. Thankfully, there are several ways to introduce recycling to a business. Look to the world’s most sustainable companies for inspiration.