Most business owners would say they are running a principled business in an honorable way. The question is, are we? According to Ken Eldred in his book, “God is at Work”, consider three categories of morality with regard to business classification:
The question really comes down to, what are the moral principles we adhere to? Can we rely solely on what is legally allowed? These are questions that need to be answered by each individual business owner and business leader. However, being the outspoken individual I am, let me make some suggestions.
A moral business adds value to the lives of individuals and to the community at large. They are principled businesses being run in an ethical fashion. I would hope all constituents associated with my company (Edoc Service) agree we fall into this category and please tell me if you think we are not or display missteps. There are many other positive company examples too numerous to name.
Immoral businesses are easy to define: Organized Crime, illegal drugs, Ponzi schemes, etc.
Amoral businesses and activities are a little harder to classify because they operate within the law yet step outside the bounds of principality. Some examples I would consider include gambling casinos, sex shops, tattoo parlors, head shops, etc. But that is just me, I could go on and on yet I am sure some reading this will not agree. That is okay, it’s your business.Here is how Ken Endred frames Amorality:
“Amorality is an attitude often found in modern Western business. Its mantra may be summed up as follows – maximize profits. While staying within the law, amoral business remains unconcerned with moral principles. The question is not ‘right or wrong?’ but ‘legal or illegal?’ The rule of law takes the place of morality.”Recently a friend and business owner hosted a Mardi Gras party. Where does this fall? In my view it is endorsing amoral activity. Why? Well think about it, what is Mardi Gras? Forgetting the original intent centuries ago, it is a festival that has trended down into debauchery! It is a party that “thumbs its nose at God” (In other words, “let’s see how drunk and crazy we can get before Lent begins”). Now should a moral, principle-based business be associated with that? You be the judge. Some organizations often celebrate “Shrove Tuesday” or “Pancake Tuesday” (as opposed to Fat Tuesday as in keeping with a more honorable theme).
Years ago when Bill Marriott Sr. opened his first hotel in Washington, D.C. he was challenged by his church for including a lounge in the operation. He explained to the church leaders that the success of his business required a bar be present (they must have accepted his explanation as he was not excommunicated). However later on as other opportunities presented themselves, such as when a chain of Las Vegas hotels became available for purchase, the Marriott Chairman refused to consider it as he would not accept gaming as a part of his company. Later generations have a more progressive view of this!
The lines can be gray as illustrated above. The question is, what kind of business are you running? As for Edoc, may we always err on the side of ethics and morality! Help me if we step out of line.]]>