Sustainability: Ethics, Legal, And Economic Aspects

1993 words - 8 pages

Whether an organization is domestic or international they have social responsibilities to the communities they operate within and to the shielding of the world. Caterpillar, Inc. is one such company that puts social responsibility at the top of their priorities. They have an abundance of engineers and technologists working on solutions to improve on sustainability. According to the 2012 Sustainability Report (2012), “at Caterpillar, we always ask ourselves, ‘What do our customers need? What does the world need?’ World Resources Institute (WRI) asks those same questions about the communities it serves, and truly delivers some amazing results” (p. 19).
Caterpillar’s Chairman and CEO, Doug Oberhelman is a member of the Board of Directors of the WRI. The WRI is an environmental group that uses research to find applied ways to safeguard the earth and improve people’s existence (“Sustainability Report,” 2012). Remanufacturing is one of the processes that Caterpillar utilizes to create sustainability throughout the world. Remanufacturing avoids waste through its salvage of materials and the associated resource savings. Sustainability organizations need to forge sustainability strategies which distribute them with cost-effective benefits and social benefits accomplished through environmental accountability. This paper will analyzing different ethical, legal, and economic issues relevant to sustainability as it pertains.
Ethics and sustainability
Organizations that are led by management who perform in a principled behavior are probable to be exemplified by an affirmative ethical civilization. Also, when their workforce is rewarded by doing what is right, helps cultivate the positive ethical image throughout the organization (Amos, 2012). When the business follows an ethical culture with ethical behaviors the decision by management and the employees will be collectively accountable. When being collectively accountable, the customers and suppliers will be more likely to provide products and leads to sales. This means profit is not the sole concern and will come through ethical acceptance. By being ethical and understanding the impact of the organizations actions, instead of profitability, the organization can make the correct decisions based on society to maintain what is right and what is wrong. As Amos (2012) indicates, “Good business ethics brings both intangible and tangible benefits.” This is what all businesses strive for. I fully agree with Amos on his research that in order to be successful, in the long run the organization must abide by a code of ethics that society will approve of. When abiding by this code, the organization will be accepted by society and will eventually surpass their peers.
So how does sustainability play into the role of being an ethical organization? Due to the scandals that have evolved, such as Enron’s misleading accounting practice and the British Petroleum’s mishap in the Gulf of...

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