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KT40103

ETHICS AND LAW: CASE STUDY OF FORD’S PINTO FIRES: THE RETROSPECTIVE

VIEW OF

FORD’S FIELD RECALL COORDINATOR

Name: DIANA SELA AUGUSTINE ANJUM

Matric No: BK11110067 (HK01)

Number of Plagiarism (%) = 8% Number of unique words = 732

1. The Ford Pinto met federal safety standards yet it had design a flaw the resulted in serious injuries and deaths. Use the stakeholder analysis to demonstrate that it is ultimately a loss if these injuries and deaths are ignored.

As desire to compete with fuel-efficient Volkswagen and Japanese imports, Ford introduced Pinto in the 1971 model year. Ford’s president Lee Lacocca insisted that the weight of Pinto is no more than 2000 pounds with the promotion cost is not more than $2000. However, even Pinto met federal safety standards, there is flaw found on the model car which is a fuel tank prone to rupturing with moderate speed rear-end collisions. Between June 9, 1978 and 15 September, 1978, six people died in Pinto fires after a rear impact.

Based on the Universalism (duty) beliefs system, moral authority is determined by the extent to which the intention of an act treats all persons with respect. Includes the requirement that everyone would act this way in the same circumstances. Referring to the Pinto’s fire case, if the injuries and deaths are ignored, the total loss will be observed due to the risk of unethical integrity will arise due to the injuries and deaths and the all the individual including the stakeholder of Fords Company will be affected if the decision to ignore this bad incidences are taken.

Besides that, any manipulation, force coercion or deceit that might harm individual involved in decision will be identified. Manipulation issue might bring up roaring situation within the company itself. The higher department will be doubted of trust issue regarding the flaw of the model car that causes injuries and deaths. The media will tend to dig the truths and this wills eventually affecting the sales of the company.

Due to the best interest of the company, all the policies and actions provided in script schemes by the company are truthfully respected by the workers however, the side effect might affect the individual that practice it. As example, Dennis A. Gioia actions that opposed the his principal ethical life while working on the Fords Company, instead of recalling back the flaw design of the Pinto, he chose not to overview the incidents and it cause deaths to Pinto trapped occupants due to fire.

In conclusions, if the injuries and deaths are seen blindly by the Fords Company in respect of profit matters, the later effect will cause a million losses overcome the profit that

the company obtained through the Pinto’s sales. It will affect not only the sales graph but also will affect the integrity of the workers of Fords Company.

2. Gioia uses the notation of script schemes to help explain why he voted to not initiate a recall of the Ford Pinto. Why is this method so common in real example? How to prevent from occurring among honest and principled such as yourself. Please note that Gioia was an activist protesting social injustice and the social irresponsibility of business when he was a student.

Based on the Ford Pinto’s case, the script schemas that applied by Gioia is defined as the template of information which is structurally arranged without facing any difficulties on understanding the overwhelming obtained information. This method is considered of shortcut to the whole long and difficult process of analysing information. However, the dark side of this script schemas is that the small, matter and important information will be less care and somehow will be treated as non-exist information.

Gioia is the activist protesting the social injustice and irresponsibility for business matter. However, after two years working with Fords Company, he tend to discount the obvious accusation where his values were not really strongly held and he had turned his back on his values in the interest of loyalty to Ford. This is where Gioia using script schemas terms where he did aware and know the real problem regarding the Pinto’s major design flow but instead to stand on his value, he choose to take the script schemes just because he is intimidated into making best decisions in the best interest to the company.

Due to making the main interest toward the company only that is the reason why he chooses voted not to recall the past values he held before. This because, the action taken by his now is merely based on plausible explanation and looks to the foibles of normal information processing. The shortcuts feature with ability to act virtually unconsciously and automatic causing him to giving not sufficient attention to important matters that requires special treatment.

In order to prevent the occurring, the essential and foundation regarding ethical values need to be strongly built. Even when the decision might affect the career, the company where we are working and also affect other involving party, the question need to asked directly to our self is “ Is this is the right thing to do and should the action be taken?”. When the unethical activities are sense, instead of just being aware of it, the action needs to be taken to make it into right things. This is because, holding tight into the values embraced is not sufficient enough if the steps and action to prevent it are not taken. It will produce the same outcome which is supporting the wrong things lingering around on. Stronger value is a must to everyone because without it, other people will take advantage and exploit it.

3. How can organizational context influence the decisions made by organizational members? Use the incidences in local universities and the rampant plagiarism and other academic misconduct that occurs as example.

Organizational context is mainly based on the on the good and benefit towards the organizational itself. This is because; the context must be referring to the main vision and mission of the certain company. Eventually, the organizational members will give their best according to the organizational context where the members will tend to make decision that makes best interest for the organization.

This is because, such as the workers on the company, they will follow the lead of the company going where all the decision and action taken is solely for the benefits of the company. The thoughts, the actions and the plans made are accordingly to the company context. This fact is unknowing happening on the employee. This is described by Gaoia through the Pinto’s case where his perspective changed after joining Ford. He stated that the basic mutual interest is to do a good job and being wanted to do in a right way unfortunately it turns out to be a different way when he is eventually becoming a person that value of wanting to do greatest good for the greatest number. This is due to the coming of accepting idea that it was not feasible to fix everything that someone might construe as problem. In a simple word, Gaoia finally accept the beliefs that as long as the problem will not matter him or becoming obstruction towards him even it will be a serious problem to other people, he choose to ignore instead of fixing. That is the biggest mistake ever Gaoia had took when he choose to left behind the values he held before and take the action that only yield towards the company without giving overview of the after effect of the real problem.

While in university, the plagiarism issue that knowingly being practiced by the student in any local university. This practice might occur due to the intention of students to yield a good marks and result thus they will choose as shortcut way to solve the problem given through plagiarism. If the institute only consider the good marks of the student and anticipate the good result only without any concern regarding the practice that students applied thus it will make worse because student will tend to keep on practicing it. Besides that, when the students is given a space to feel free on doing such things thus this plagiarism will not stop. The academicals approach should leans more towards the real practice and soft skill of students on analysing student performance. This because, when the study conducted not solely based on papers or writing but on the real example thus it is impossible the plagiarism to occur. The awareness regarding plagiarism on the institute should be thickened so the students will aware the dangerous of this practice and will stop on practicing it.

In a nutshell, the member of organizational is most affected by the organizational context itself. This is because, members will tend to have script schemas the yield to the togetherness benefit and good which is toward the organization. The decision make will not only base on individual point of view but also due to the corporate context.

4.

If you had been in Dennis Gioia’s position, what would have you done? Why?

If I was in Dennis Gioia’s position, instead of choosing to leave the ethical values that he had been held before this and walk away from the Fords Company, I will choose to stay at the Fords Company and will be responsible to the mistaken action that I have been practiced while working at the company.

This is because, Gioia’s responsibilities included the operational coordination of all the current recall campaigns, tracking incoming information to identify developing problems and reviewing filed reports of alleged components failures that led to accidents. These responsibilities are considered the top most important position where he/she needs to be truthfully identified the failure of certain products for sake of safety of user that will buy and using it later. The safety depends on this forensic study field, the damage and failure need to be identified and if any is found thus the improvement, repair and upgrade must be taken immediately.

When standing on Gaioa’s position, it will sure i will facing the same exact situation where either I need to embraced the beliefs and rule that I held in such a long time to up stand the right and justice in business or only considering the yield toward the company. When meet this kind of situation, I will stand still for ethical values instead of my career, profit and benefit of the company. Why? This is because; the responsibilities that if I choose to leave will haunt me for forever. This decision making involving the justice for the deaths of Pinto’s user as well the injuries that already happened. Instead of seeing the whole incidents as matter or number of profit, the humanity should be restored by doing the right things and improved the damage.

It is reported, three of these people from the six people that killed in Indiana in August 1978 when their 1973 Pinto burst into flames after being rear-ended by van was teenage girls. The Pinto gasoline tanks were prone to catch fire during rear-ends collisions. Sadly, Ford already knew this defect and failed to warn to the public used or to fix the problems and defect due to the profit matter. This death can be escaped if the Ford company being aware the importance of users instead of inly seeing Pinto as a competitive product and as a centre of profit. The same goes to the Gaoia’s position, where he failed to make things right and ensure the justice being taken but he fell to the trapped of Ford context to interest fully towards the company benefit. The non-guilty victim of the fires of Pinto would be still alive if the greed passion is removed.

In conclusion, if I was in Gaoia’s position, I will ensure to take the action that supposedly to be taken at first step instead only having a good intention towards the whole thing. This is because, good intention is not enough because people are judged based on the action taken. What kind of action that someone willing to take to stop the injustice to be happened is what makes difference with people who are not embraced ethical values.

5. Describe the four key decision-making lessons that Dennis Gioia identifies for neophyte decision makers. Discuss how you expect or intend to use these four lessons in your own career.

One of the decision-making lessons for neophyte decision maker identified by Dennis Gioia is to develop our ethical base value in this given time. This is because; too many people are taking this issue lightly as they are not giving serious attention to assessing and articulating their own values. As simply as that, people will not know what they stand for just because they have not taking this matter into serious consideration. Sooner or later, when entering into career level, this feature will actually differentiate someone into their level accordingly. There is group of people will tend to work just to increase the number and also just to ensure their work will satisfied by the higher department however if only practicing this working concept, eventually it will cause us to be trapped on the unethical practice if we have not the needed ethical value base. The early preparation is mostly needed to overcome any of this serious matter later. If we do not decide our own values now, do not be surprised if the others will gladly decide them for us or when we will influence to accept their decision. We are easy prey once we cannot decide our own values.

Secondly, recognizes that everyone including ourselves is the unwitting victim of his or her cognitive structuring. It can be seen when people entering into organization will feel surprised with the provided script and schemas that the provided in order to understand and act in the organizational world. However, less people aware that sometimes the very structuring information on the script schemas might hides information that might be important and require us to confront our values kind of information. This feature will become a big help to us when entering career stage later because, sometimes the decision we make will be flexible according to our employer. In other case also when we will confront the situation where the employer will asked us to not asking for any important information that might affect our ethics creditability just because to yield to company that we are working for.

Thirdly, be aware of how strongly, yet how subtly, our job role and our organizational culture affect the ways you interpreted and make sense of information thus will affect the ways us to develop the scripts that will guide us. This is because; organizational culture has a much greater effect on the individual cognition than we would ever suspect. By knowing fully our job and our role, even the company cultural might affecting our decision making but it will less influence the overall decision. When we aware that the flow of working in company later is based on the company cultural script thus we can always prepare for the worse when any decision making needed us to stand with our own values regardless the benefit for the company.

Lastly, ensure that we are prepared enough to face critical responsibility regardless the age. We as individual in the organizational later need to know our own values and we are recognize much the way we think so that we will know how to make a good decision. Especially when we are involving on engineer field, civil engineer to be specific, when working as consultant, the responsible is carried by the person through each sheet he or she signed. The consultant needs to obey all the regulation, precautions and

standards without any failure. If somehow the company employers asking to shortcut any information steps for a good sake of the company, then this feature will giving a good advantage for particular individual where when she or he know enough regarding his or her responsibility based on scope of work given thus it will not be a problem to make a good decision.