Minimum of 400 words in the body Minimum of 2 sources from the literature in addition to course texts
APA FORMAT to be used.
Business integrity is a crucial aspect of organizational success and should receive ample attention. In particular, Christian leaders should place heavy emphasis on ethical behaviors in the workplace, as that is Christ’s expectation. This writing is an examination of ethical behaviors in the workplace, beginning with the power of business integrity. The author will then discuss God’s perspective on business, exploring various biblical references. The writing will conclude with an exploration of decision-making models, discussing the author’s current models utilized as well as how they have changed throughout the scope of this course.
Integrity is a powerful component of business. Gamble, Peteraf, and Thompson (2019, p. 186) considered ethical strategies and behaviors to be “good business,” as unethical behaviors often lead to damaged shareholder relationships, diminished reputation, lost revenue, increased costs, and decreased stock prices. Business ethics, then, were established to ensure organizational actions were conducted honestly and morally (Gamble et al., 2019). Such behaviors also helped organizations avoid “bad strategy,” which Rumelt (2017, p. 32) defined as dysfunctions within leadership. Since employees often lead by example (Gamble et al., 2019), ethical behaviors and strategies should be evident among Christian leaders.
The Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Act of 2002 was enacted to prevent the unethical behaviors of corporate accounting scandals (Hassan, Nassar, & Witherspoon, 2019). Accounting fraud has occurred through inadequate oversight, managerial pressures to meet or exceed performance targets, and company cultures that emphasize profit over ethics (Gamble et al., 2019). Therefore, the SOX act required organizations to provide transparency regarding accounting practices to ensure more accurate bookkeeping and to create more formal internal control systems (Hassan et al., 2019).
Shu, Chen, Lin, and Chen (2018) suggested that organizations began to implement corporate integrity programs as a means of improving quality and internal controls after the passing of SOX. Corporate integrity was identified by Shu et al. (2018) as the concepts and values shared by all members of a firm, noting that high levels of corporate integrity resulted in high organizational performance. Specifically, firms with a robust corporate integrity program realized improved transaction costs, greater efficiencies, enhanced developments, and ultimately increased their chances of survival (Shu et al., 2018), resulting in sound business practices. Global organizations should consider how corporate integrity programs may be modified by geographic region, though, as ethics and integrity vary based on the norms and expectations of different regions (Gamble et al., 2019).
Keller and Alsdorf (2012) suggested that Christians should understand the premise of work so they can appropriately fulfill their God-given purpose. Genesis 1:27 (New Living Translation) says, “So God created human beings in His own image.” Integral to God’s image is His desire to work, as demonstrated through the creation story told at the beginning of the Bible (Genesis 1:1-31). Likewise, God created man to work (Keller & Alsdorf, 2012). God confirmed this intention in Genesis 1:28 when He said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.” These guidelines became the first work orders provided to humans and simultaneously provided instructions for future businesses (Keller & Alsdorf, 2012).
Corruption within companies began once sin entered the world (Genesis 3:1-19). Romans 12:9b says, “hate what is evil; cling to what is good” (New International Version). While evil has been around since the fall of man, Christian leaders should strive to “overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:21b, English Standard Version). Regarding business, leaders could overcome corruption with integrity, making decisions in a way that are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and praiseworthy (Philippians 4:8). Further, Paul instructed Christians, “whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (New Living Translation). This instruction extends to behaviors within the workplace.
Keller and Alsdorf (2012, p. 111) noted that a common theme throughout the Bible was that “sin has natural consequences.” Knowing this, Christian leaders should conduct business ethically to minimize the effects of sin. Keller and Alsdorf further asserted that sinful behaviors, such as extreme competition, disunity, and strife, often result from pride and frequently result in poor decision making (2012). Christian leaders should be aware of the effects of sin and guard against immoral business behaviors, from personal actions as well as those of others within the organization.
Throughout this course, the author has explored numerous decision-making models, examining their implications, benefits, and drawbacks. Before beginning this course of study, the author was most familiar with the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis. Due to her previous familiarity, the author routinely incorporated this methodology into her decision-making processes. After a thorough examination of this and other decision-making tools, however, she now places less emphasis on the SWOT analysis and instead considers other helpful tools to aid in the decision-making process.
Gap-in-the-Market is a new model to the author that she intends to implement. As noted by Krogerus and Tschappeler (2017), this model helps organizations determine their market, customers, and future products. Once leaders identify these three factors, organizations can then determine a niche market to pursue (Krogerus & Tschappeler, 2017). Stop Rule is another model considered by the author. As noted by Krogerus and Tschappeler (2017), this model is intended to decrease information processing times, providing a definite end time to the data collection period. Gap-in-the-Market and Stop Rule could effectively be utilized in tandem and will be strongly considered by the author for future decisions.
To summarize, this writing has been an exploration of business ethics. The paper began with a discussion on the vital role of integrity within business. The author analyzed the passing of SOX, as this act established guidelines for integrity practices within an organization and allowed for the creation of corporate integrity programs. Next, the author discussed a Christian worldview by examining God’s perspective of business integrity. Finally, the author examined decision-making models. She discussed her prior familiarity with the SWOT analysis, as well as her new knowledge and intended incorporation of the Gap-in-the-Market and Stop Rule models.
Hassan, M., Nassar, R., & Witherspoon, A. (2019). Impact of internal control over financial reporting under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act on a firm’s stock price and stock volatility. International Journal of Business, Accounting and Finance, 13(1), 1-13. Retrieved from https://go-gale-com.ezproxy.liberty.edu/ps/i.do?p=AONE&u=vic_liberty&id=GALE|A584729656&v=2.1&it=r&sid=summon
This paper discussed a research study that examined the impact of the Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Act, explicitly exploring the first filing of an annual financial report form by public firms. Seventy-seven companies that traded publicly on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) comprised the study participants. Findings suggested no significant impact on stock price volatility occurred regarding the use of the 10-K filing form. New information was gained from this study, as these were the first public companies to file the 10-K after the enactment of SOX. An advantage of the writing was the inclusion of a thorough literature review. The literature supported the author’s findings and provided a robust introductory foundation for readers that were not intimately familiar with this content. A weakness of the article was the lack of recommendations for future research. Since this was the first study of its kind, additional research would need to occur to validate the findings further. The authors should have acknowledged this deficit and provided suggestions for future research. The first two authors, Hassan and Nassar, published numerous articles from the years of 1998 to 2019, with nearly 40 articles between the two of them. Each of these articles focused on strategy and other topics regarding national and global business interactions, although Nassar’s articles primarily focused on the banking sector. The vast number of publications demonstrate high levels of expertise of the authors. Conversely, this was the first publication for Witherspoon, who is the third co-author for this article. The International Journal of Business, Accounting and Finance journal requires a double-blind peer review process for all submitted articles and appeals to leaders and business persons in various industries. The Academy of Business and Public Administration Disciplines publishes this scholarly journal.
Shu, W., Chen, Y., Lin, B., & Chen, Y. (2018). Does corporate integrity improve the quality of internal control? China Journal of Accounting Research, 11(4), 407-427. htpps://doi.org/10.1016/j.cjar.2018.09.002
This article described a study focused on corporate integrity and the subsequent internal quality control within China. The study was a three-pronged approach, examining large numbers of participants from four separate surveys. One survey was of A-Share listed companies, two surveys were of companies in two separate board markets, and the final survey was of small and medium-sized firms. Study findings suggested a negative relationship between corporate integrity and internal control weakness, mainly when the legal development was inadequate or when market competition was intense. The study contributed to the existing body of knowledge, as it highlighted the need for new theories to explain organizational behaviors. A strength of the article was the thorough study design, including four separate batches of surveys, as described, with response rates of at least 79 percent per survey. Additionally, this study spanned two years, resulting in a robust data collection process. A weakness of the article was the lack of discussion regarding the third hypothesis. The authors thoroughly discussed the first two hypotheses, but no discussion accompanied the third hypothesis. Readers that are not familiar with this content could have difficulty understanding the authors’ intention behind this hypothesis. Each of the authors worked for universities within China, either in the schools of business, accounting, or research. The primary and third author listed, Wei and Bin respectively, previously published three other journal articles, all of which concerned internal organizational control. This article, however, was the first publication identified for the second and fourth authors, both of which were named Y. Chen. Due to the knowledge, relevant work experience, and history of publications, one could determine a level of expertise for the combined group of authors. China Journal of Accounting Research is an open-access publication that requires a peer review process for all submitted articles. Elsevier is the publisher, resulting in the journal being considered a scholarly publication. Managers and corporate integrity officers were among the target audience for this article
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