Family Business Practice

There are many topics in a family business to be addressed when it comes to compensation and discrimination. There are a few key factors that must be considered when dealing with the ethics of such situations. Most jobs require a set of ethics , morals, and a set guideline of principles to be followed. When is the best time to know when you are being taken advantage of and who is abusing their power and trying to keep a business ethic and practicality when dealing with your job and probational periods within said job ( Payrolls New Hire), and should she notify the owner? Is it okay to use your power in an unfair way to gain access and to better take care of your family (General Manager and his brother the service Tech.

)? Why shouldn’t someone be allowed to be bullied and be able to supersede when they see an injustice (anyone witness to the unethical and unfair treatment)?

In this dissertation we will view the flaws and pitfalls of going against their own ethics and who it affects either directly or indirectly and view the likelihood of becoming a whistleblower due to an injustice on the people abusing their powers and positions.

We must first establish who the stakeholders are, which could be anyone involved in the business who stands to benefit from the action or inaction of the business. This includes any money distributed unevenly between workers for gain, depending on the action. This could even be extended to the monies lost or made for the families of the workers that are subjected to the unethical actions or biased and unfair treatment.

Anyone who has identified an act or something that goes against ethics is a stakeholder. The people standing to gain or are involved in the unethical actions are stakeholders, the owner, and those who have lost something due to the unethical treatment with special treatments and favoritism. So, this includes the characters Jane, Brad, Eddie, Greg, and those who are not directly aforementioned.

When Jane saw and happened to be privy to Eddie giving Brad the better work tickets on top of the workstack to expedite work orders and give Brad an unfair advantage over everyone else·it was an ethical breech although not necessarily viewed as a criminal act in its entirety. As per the case mentioned in our book, “Law and Ethics in the Business Environment” : Pierce v. Ortho Pharmaceutical Corporation, 417 A.2d 505 (1980) reads the courts favor or action of ruling in the matter as, “Employees who are professionals owe a special duty to abide not only by federal and state laws, but also by the recognized code of ethics of their profession (Halbert, 2015,p 57-58).” The actions of Jane should be applied due to the course of her actions in upholding her own ethics, her work duties within her parameters, and that of Brads Business·it may alleviate the actions but not the symptoms. Anytime someone is put into a position of power they are left to their own discretion, we want them to do right and hope they do right for the better good, though all are held to this theory or course of action, not all will follow it.

As we have seen written, viewed, and upheld in most states, employment-at-will is almost always enforced. This is to say that employers can hire or fire someone, with cause, without cause, or no cause at all. Which means if Eddie wanted to fire Jane for blowing the whistle on him and his brother Greg by going to Brad in the matter·it could leave Jane, Brad, Eddie, and Greg as well as his business in a precarious position. It can be a slippery slope. Although Jane must keep a certain level of confidentiality when it comes to salaries and payrolls, this doesn’t mean that she should keep silent about unethical actions.

When we see an injustice not only to those who are doing the right thing, employees have a way of seeing, hearing, knowing, and talking about what is going on within a company thus causing the company’s reputation to be viewed in a negative light and possible downfall. Brad can exercise one of two options at this point and he can either uphold Eddie’s decision to fire Jane. Although not the most effective way to shine more unwanted light and attention on his company but by further intimidating future and current employees from wanting to work for an unethical company or to come forward about unethical company policies. On the flip side of the same coin, Brad can also choose to fire Eddie and Greg for their inherent, unfair, and selfish acts. This is because it will take away from the other working classes and as far as the extension of the working classes families and Brad as the owner of the company who are losing too much time, money, energy and resources to support only two people and their immediate families.

Private Sector Whistleblower Protection Streamline Act of 2012, H.R.6409, 122th Cong.

§ 2(d) (2012) states, “SEC. 102. Protection against retaliation or discrimination. (a) In general-No employer shall take any unfavorable personnel action against an employee

if such action is due, in whole or in part, to any lawful act done, perceived to have been

done, or intended to be done by the employee to- (1) communicate or disclose, without

restriction as to place, form, motive, context, forum, or prior disclosure, including

disclosure in the ordinary course of the employee’s duties, to an employer or manager,

public body, or the media, or to the public, any protected information, where disclosure

is not specifically prohibited by law or because such information is classified, in which

case the information may be disclosed to an official eligible by law to receive such

information and designated by the employer, or to a relevant regulatory authority, law

enforcement agency, or Inspector General·(3) object to or refuse to participate in any

activity, policy, practice, or assigned task which the employee reasonably believes is or

would be in violation of an applicable law or endangers the safety or health of the employee or others (Congress.gov, 2012).’

In this case we must implement Utilitarianism as the guiding factor. When we look at the scope as mentioned above, we want to implement the best course of action that will benefit the many and bring about the best and happiest results for all involved. What is good for most of the workers such as Jane, Brad, the person previously fired (if an internal investigation can show that she was fired without just cause) and all the other workers who have lost on income, revenue, and ultimately, profits.

We want there to be a certain level of fairness, without bias or intimidation, and even go as far as to say that of anyone was fired for doing the right thing in the course of retaliation(there are laws that protect Jane), that it could come back on Brad in so many ways legally. If Jane was to set precedence in these proceedings and did do the right thing or if she was held to the decision that she was in fact fired out of retaliation, it would open the door for many to sue Brad’s company for emotional suffering, loss of pay, and trauma dealt to the family, we may even find that some courts may be willing to make Brad pay backpay retroactively for all the pain and suffering caused to people due to the unethical practices. Hence, further protecting all stakeholders within the company.

Halbert, T., & Ingulli, E. (2019). VitalSource Bookshelf Online: Law & Ethics in the Business Environment. Retrieved from

Woolsey (D-CA-6), L. C. (2012, October 2). H.R.6409 – 112th Congress (2011-2012): Private Sector Whistleblower Protection Streamlining Act of 2012. Retrieved from

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