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Describe the Social Implications of Business Ethics Facing a Tesco in Its Different Areas of Activity

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Describe the social implications of business ethics facing a selected business in its different areas of activity
For this task I am going to use Tesco plc.
The social implications for Tesco direct to the actions of the organisation having consequences on society and there are many areas of activity that the business does that have implications on society.
Finance
Tesco plc. has many subsidiaries one of these is Tesco bank which is a private limited company meaning it is a free enterprise, so it has the freedom to operate for profit competitively without interference from the government and as it loans money to UK residents over 18, the company could choose their own APR rates which is the percentage the customer must pay back on their loans. depending on how these APR rates it could have very beneficial or damaging consequences on society as many families could be in debt and not afford to pay it back so their life style would have to change and then society would change on a whole, however this would look bad on the company and their stores would lose business through the product of bad publicity so they must show that they care about they’re customers by putting reasonable rates.
Bribery
There could be bribery within Tesco Plc. for an unfair advantage in the market because they could bribe other companies for information or business contracts or even mergers. However this would be unfair and would be a disadvantage to the competition and the company would be winning under false pretence which shows society they do not have to work hard as long as they could use money to bribe their way to success so it would have a negative influence on the competition and society as a whole.
Lobbying
Tesco could be lobbying by approaching an MP to persuade them to make changes to regulations to give them specifically an advantage and power to do something with the business to benefit them. This would look bad on Tesco as MPs make laws while considering everyone that is affected by them not specific rules for an organisation to stretch its powers. This would make society think they don’t have a say in the regulations as they are not a massive market leading organisation.
Executive pay
Tesco could pay their executives ridiculous amounts of money exceeding their working efforts and hide this through the accounting within the organisation however this would go against fairness in society if top executives’ pay themselves what they like regardless of their efforts.
Insider trading
Tesco could use insider trading to earn money in a very unethical way through giving out information about their value expectation and fixing their performance to get a desired increase or decrease in the value of the shares of the company to make a lot of money, however this is very unfair and would take money from society if they purposely lost value of their shares to buy them back at a lower price so when they buy them back and increase their value they have earned a lot of money through cheating on the stock exchange. This would also make society think that they have no control over their money and it would widen the gap between the rich and poor.
Ethics in Human resource management
Discrimination
Tesco could discriminate an only employ certain people to work for their organisation, however there are laws and regulations that guide the recruitment and selection process so this doesn’t happen because it would have a really bad impact on society because if only people that lived in a certain area got jobs or only people that spoke or dressed in a certain way got jobs it would make society unfair and they’re wouldn’t be any diversity as everyone would strive to be the same thing so they’re would be no equality.
Worker surveillance
Tesco have worker surveillance by watching the employees on the cameras in the store because their actions at work do have an impact on the organisation and also if there is any conflict between employees the manager of the store would need to see the evidence. Tesco worker surveillance in store would only go this far, they would not need to heck their emails or their calls because that would be wrong as the employees have a right to their privacy and their own lives outside of work. If Tesco did unethically use worker surveillance it would be a violation of human rights and it would look bad on the company as society would think they are trying to own and control their employees.
Production
Tesco sell produce many products from food to clothing and health and beauty products however they must follow ethics when producing these products because there are laws on the production especially for food and drugs. if Tesco genetically modify their food some members of society may disagree with it a bring Tesco bad publicity, the same as if they disagree with the animal testing Tesco do for their drugs before they put them on the market because they need to make sure they are fit for human consumption.

More ethical issues with production would include planned obsolescence which is when an organisation produces something to not last over a certain time period meaning they would have to buy another one, get a guarantee or get the newer model out at the time. obviously products are not meant to last forever so obsolesce is inevitable but if Tesco planned this with their product then they could be sewed by the consumers and also it would waste the money of all the consumers and it is ethically wrong for a company to have that much control over their products as to decide when they break because once it has been purchased it then belongs to the consumer so if Tesco did this society would turn against them and want their money back for the products they’ve purchased.
Sales and marketing
Money is a very powerful motive for any business so some businesses will use unethically methods to attempt to increase their sales and customers. One way Tesco do this is through spam emails to people that sign up to their website. This could annoy people and many people have complained to them about this giving Tesco bad publicity.
Tesco could also try to increase sales unethically through raising their own status for example if they say one of their new products has been recommended by 1000s of customers and is a best seller, when in reality it actually isn’t then they are conning the consumers and so society will not trust them and from then will look down on their products that they claim to be best sellers.
Intellectual property
The laws on this mean that people can have ownership over their intellectual property so businesses are more inclined to be original as they would be rewarded for it. There are different types of intellectual property.
Brand identity
Trademarks are for brand identity and this protects Tesco’s logo from being copied or ripped off as the idea belongs to Tesco and they put the creativity into producing the logo so it wouldn’t be fair if someone else or another business tried to steal it or use it illegitimately.
Material
Copyright protects Tesco’s material from being used for example their adverts have copyright over them to stop other businesses using their music, art, text etc. As Tesco had to be creative by making an advert that is effective an original it would be unethical for another business to take their idea.
A patent ensures that any inventions made by Tesco’s are not copied and no one else can take ownership of the invention.
All these types of IP (intellectual property) are protected because if they weren’t then no one could be sure what Tesco products are genuine and the brand would lose all its value as other business may use their ideas, material and even brand identity.
In conclusion there are many areas of activity in which businesses must be ethical to ensure that the market is fair and that they don’t get bad press from society.

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