1. An important issue in conducting business overseas is whether a company should follow their home country’s ethical standards or those of the host country. The ancient world adage “When in Rome, do as the Romans do” is quite instructive on this matter. The argument in favor of behaving according to host country socially accepted morals shows respect both to the citizens and the culture of the hosting country in which the business is conducting affairs. Evaluate these statements and the implications for conducting business outside’s one’s home country from an ethical relativistic point of view.
2. Some research into the effects of cultural variables on the application of ethical standards in a given society have shown that people in individualistic cultures tend to be more pervasive in applying their ethical standards to all, while people in collectivistic cultures tend to be more particularistic, applying differential ethical value standards to members of their in-groups and out-groups. We might conclude based on this research that people from different nations have distinct conceptions of ethical and unethical behavior. Assume the scores on Hofstede’s scale for Individualism in Bolumbia is 13 while in the U.S. it is 91; the score for Uncertainty Avoidance is 80 and 46, respectively. How might these cultural differences influence your judgment whether it is acceptable for the engineers to have accepted the gratuities?
3. Assume that the engineers of Telecommunications did influence the decision-making process by establishing engineering specifications that only BNC could meet. The engineers received free travel and lodging from BNC but only after the job was completed. Is there anything wrong with this picture? Consider the ethical values of objectivity and integrity in answering the question.