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Introduction to Business – Chapter 4

4 social responsibility issues
Environmental protection
Workplace diversity
Job safety
Employee wellness
social responsibility
the duty of a business to contribute to the well – being of a community
(A business must weigh the interests and concerns of many groups)
environmental protection
-Lumber companies have reforestation programs trees can be renewed
-takes action to improve of change the operations that cause population
Non – renewable
a resource than cannot be replaced when used up
(Ex: gas, oil, and minerals)
when the environment is negatively affected from the by – product
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
-Government has set standards for the water and air quality
-They monitor and enforce those standards
-Work with local businesses to reduce pollution
Workplace Diversity
-Workforce of a business should reflect the groups in a community
-Must have equal access to education, training, jobs, and career advancement
workplace diversity challenges
-learning how to manage a workforce that is diverse
-removal of employment barriers for women
-making sure accommodations are met in accordance with the ADA
Age Discrimination Act
Protects people 40+ from discrimination
Job Safety Requirements
-Right to work in a risk free environment
-Protection from fire and hazards
-Employee Training on safety
Job Safety rules enforced by
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Employee Wellness
Healthy employees are an asset to a company
Social Responsibility Benefits
-Expanded justice for groups of a society
-Enhanced company image
-Reduced need for government actions
-Improved quality of life in a community and around the world
-Increased awareness of social issues among workers, consumers, and others
Social Responsibility Costs
-New non polluting or safer equipment
-Building repairs to remove risks
-Wellness and rehabilitation programs
-Social projects sponsored by a company
are principles of morality or rules
(Gain ethics through experience, parent’s influence, peers so you can make decisions later in life)
Business Ethics
are rules about how business and their employee ought to behave
(Involved conforming to rules
Helps identify employee behavior)
Code of Ethics
are the set of rules for guiding the actions of employees
(Need to be written for acceptable actions)
Ethical conduct guidelines:
Is this action legal?
Does the action violate professional or company standards?
Who is affected by the action and how?
Guidelines for Writing A Code of Ethics:
Determine the purpose of the code.
Tailor the code to the needs and values of the organization.
Consider involving employees from all levels of the company in writing the code.
Determine the rules or principles that all members of the organization will be expected to adhere.
Include information about how the code will be enforced.
Determine how the code will be implemented and where it will be published or posted.
Determine how and when the code will be reviewed and revised.
Government in Society
Government plays a role in all economic systems
(Private enterprise systems, governments role is much less extensive than other economic system)
Roles of Government
Providing services for members of society
Protecting citizens, consumers, businesses, and workers
Regulating utilities and promoting competition
Providing information and support to businesses
Buying goods and services
Hiring public employees
Raising revenue
Levels of Government
Federal, state, and local
Federal Government
role is to oversee that activities involving 2 or more states or other countries
Interstate Commerce
business dealings involving companies in more than 1 state
State Government
Intrastate Commerce
Intrastate Commerce
regulates business transactions within a state
Local Government
oversees local police, fire departments, city and town councils and provides order
Government Protection Activities – Worker Protection
laws have been established to keep employees safe
Government inspection and regulation of work areas reduce the number of job-related accidents
-is an agreement to exchange a good or service for something of value (usually money)
-are a basic part of business
-can be written or unwritten
Contract Basics
Valid, enforceable contracts must contain:
Competent Parties
Agreement in Contract Basics
An offer must be made, and an acceptance must occur
Competent Parties in Contract Basics
Those entering into the contract must be of legal age and must be mentally competent
Consideration in Contract Basics
Something of measurable value must be exchanged by the parties involved
Legality in Contract Basics
The contract must be for a product or service that may be legally sold; also no fraud or deception exists in the agreement
Legal Systems
Criminal and civil cases
Examples of Criminal Cases
shoplifting, charges brought on an employee of business, a business breaking regulation laws
Examples of Civil Cases
unauthorized use of trademarks, being sued for breach of contract
Protection of Intellectual Property
Patents, Copyrights, and Trademarks
Intellectual Property
intangible with no physical characteristics, cannot physically touch this
-individuals or companies create a new product, they may obtain a patent
-gives the inventor the sole right to make, use, or sell the item for 20 years
protects the creative work of authors, composers, and artist
lasts entire life of person
-a word, letter, or symbol
-business register name, team emblems, and label designs
-Symbols can be identified at a logo (Nike Swoosh, Golden Arches)
Regulation of utilities
-Chosen to serve a community
-Privately owned but government regulated
-Rates for these services are decided by the government
Public Utility
an organization that supplies a service or product vital to all people
(EX: telephone companies, water and electric services)
Prevent unfair business practices
-When there is competition, consumers get the best prices
-To prevent monopolies, a passage of antitrust laws are passed
when a business has control of the market for a product or service
Antitrust Laws
prevent unfair practices with advertising, pricing, and misleading labels
United States is structured as a
private enterprise or free market system
Reasons for government regulation of utilities might include
-the assurance of fair prices
-the conservation of resources
-to avoid overcrowding of utility poles and other facilities, such as power plants
Government Assists Business
Government collects data and valuable information
Government provides the Small Business Administration (SBA)
Government buys goods and services
Government employs workers
Government collects data and valuable information
This helps businesses make wiser choices
(EX: income, prices, worker availability)
Small Business Administration (SBA)
will guarantee business loans
Government buys goods and services
total federal, state, and local government spending make up about 20% of all the goods and services produced in the US
Government employs workers
16% of workers are public employees
Government Raises Money
Need money to fund operations and pay wages to workers
Government income obtained through taxes and borrowing
Government can raise revenue
fines for traffic violations
fees and licensing
driver’s licenses
fishing privileges
-levied on earnings, the value of property, and on the sale price of goods and services
-individuals’ earnings are subject to an income tax
-income taxes are levied on the income of individuals
-individual income tax is the largest source of revenue for the federal government
-corporate income taxes also provide government revenue
a major source of revenue for local governments is
the real estate property tax
property tax is based on
the value of land and buildings
the cost of buying things is increased by a
sales tax
sales tax
is a state or local tax on goods and services that is collected by the seller
-another activity of government which is lent money by selling bonds
-by borrowing money, the government becomes a debtor and must pay interest on its debt
-bonds issued by the federal government are considered the least risky of all debt
bonds issued by the US government are backed by the
“full faith and credit” of the federal government
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