Ethics is a subject that comes up often in business and technology. Here at Inc, we've written about it several times (e.g. Ethical Hackers, The Cost of Business Ethics). So it's not surprising that ComputerWorld has published a new article on seven ethical questions that might give you pause.
'Question 1: You open an e-mail to find a huge file of your company's HR data that was sent to you in error. You can see how much everyone makes, their performance reports … everything that is pertinent to their employment. So, do you a) take a quick skim through before notifying the sender; or b) close it immediately and notify the sender? Is it wrong to look even if you keep the information to yourself?'
They only get stickier from there.
So what's the big deal about ethics anyway? Part of the reason why it resurfaces again and again in business is that in order to succeed, it can be tempting to do things that are less than honorable, especially if others don't know about it. Unfortunately, pushing ethics to the side has caused some serious problems for businesses like Enron.
Here at Journyx we have a saying "No Shelfware". What we mean by that is that we don't want your money if you're not going to succeed with our technology. We try hard to be fair with employees, stockholders and customers. Sometimes their interests collide and things get complex. It's easy to pontificate about ethics from an ivory tower. Try operating in the real world. That's much more interesting.
Read more of Curt's musings here.