Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 4

MacGregor 1

Mathew MacGregor

Professor Corrine Anderson

ACCTG 2600

September 25, 2017

Personal Ethics and Financial Reporting

Personal ethics plays a large role in everyones daily lives. Depending on where you

grew up, who youre family and friends were, and what youre religious views are is just a few

examples of the nearly infinite amount of variables that play into someones personal ethics.

I believe that there were many variables and instances that played important roles

throughout my life so far in regards to my own ethical development. Since I was born here in the

United States of America; I believe I have naturally gravitated towards more western style of

philosophy in regards to my ethical choices in life. There is also the variable of family, and how I

was raised; coming from divorced parents, one of which was Mormon, and the other Atheist.

Although their religious views differed substantially, their views regarding ethical choices

seemed nearly identical. I was taught about ethical choices, or what is considered right and

wrong in the regards of many aspects. Depending on the action or behavior I displayed growing

up I would be taught about what is right or wrong, their reasons seemed to differ on a case to

case basis. Sometimes the reason was because it was illegal, or that I had hurt someone

physically or mental whether intentionally or not, and other times it was because of my parents

own misguided beliefs or ethics that they would pass down to me with good intentions.

Trying to decide on what is right and wrong in such a chaotic world with no definitive

answer presented before us, we are then left to decide for ourselves with were we would like to

draw the line. This is the core issue of why it is so hard to decide collectively on what is
MacGregor 2

considered right or wrong, what is considered ethically okay, and what is considered morally

acceptable. Technically, I believe that ethics only exists where there are at least a pair of two or

more living organisms in conflict who are capable of processing the concept of ethics. To put

this into perspective, there would be no governing body of ethics without formation of some

organism capable of creating, devising, or enforcing that code of ethics in the world. There needs

to be however; at least two organisms which have different viewpoints on one or more points of

what that governing code of ethics should be given the subject at hand, because if there is only

one body of governing ethic in the universe, there would be no right or wrong for there is only

one rule book to abide by.

The question remains however, what are my own personal ethics, and how do I decided

on what is considered right or wrong. I have found that the older I get, the harder this question

seems to become. To create my own personal ethics I had to first lay a foundation of acceptable

behavior that my peers and I could all agree with; most of which is taught to us by our parents.

This stuff is very generic, things like; dont do to others that you wouldnt want done to you, a

great example would be physical pain, most would agree that it is not morally okay to randomly

hurt someone without cause or reason. As I got older I had to develop a higher function of my

own personal ethics, most of which started to come from social interaction with friends and

family. Things such as what is considered morally or ethically appropriate in a given situation,

this included things like how to dress for an occasion, how to speak to someone respectively, and

what behavior was deemed morally acceptable at the time. Most would not consider it to be right

to were blue jeans and be rambunctious at a persons funeral.

As I got older however, it started to become difficult to decipher what is considered right

or wrong. This complex subject matter comes with a lot of gray area, and unlike the foundation
MacGregor 3

of my own personal ethics where the vast majority of people seem to agree on, this is where

people start to disagree with each other a lot more on what is considered right or wrong. Like

trying to justify fraudulent behavior, such as stealing money from the company you work at in

order to help a loved one in need. Some people believe it is never morally alright, it was not his

money, he was not honest about what he was doing, and it is not his choice to decide how the

companys money is spent, even if it was to help a sick loved one. Others believe however that

on a case by case basis it was not entirely wrong of him to choose to do such an action, after all

he was only trying to look out for a loved one, and that the company could easily handle the

revenue that was loss.

How do I decide on what is right when facing such a complex situation? Depending on

the amount of time I have, I first evaluate the entire situation to the best of my ability. I then

examine and analyze all of my choices that are presented before me, most of which are going to

probably have strong roots in the foundation of my personal ethics. I then compare and contrast

my options and decided on a course of action to take. The course of action I take however is not

written in stone, I am willing to adapt to new information or events as they unfold, for we cant

be 100% right in every possible situation we happen to walk into. There was once a situation in

which I faced an ethical choice, I got a call from a good friend, it was the dead of night and his

car had broken down and he needed a ride. Ethically I believe it is not morally acceptable to

leave a good friend out on the side of the road alone at night when I am easily able and willing to

go and get him. I was however morally against the fact that he had a trafficking amount of drugs

on him at the time. If I left him out there I would have gone against my own morals, and I would

have left a good friend out to possibly get picked up by the cops and thrown in jail. If I do go out

and help him, I am becoming an accomplice to a crime, and I still go against my own morals.
MacGregor 4

In the end I decided to help him out because he had no one else to turn to. If I could go

back and do it differently, I dont think I would have done anything different. Some people may

not agree with my morals, and the ethical decision I made at that point in time, none the less I

stand by my choice to this day.

Now to the question at hand, how would personal ethics impact financial reporting?

There are many ways that someones personal ethics could impact the financial reporting of an

organization. For example my own personal ethics could come into conflict with that of the

organization I work for if I decided to try and report false or wrong financial statements for the

benefit of myself or for a friend in need. A situation I could encounter in the future would be

something along the lines of my boss asking me to falsely the financial reports to either avoid a

lawsuit, make more revenue, or to attract more investors. I could respond to the situation by

examining the whole situation, analyze my options and who it would impact, and ultimately

decided on what to do given the opportunity. More likely than not I would likely stick to my

principles on what is collectively considered ethical accounting, unless there is an unreasonable

amount of incentive to engage myself in fraudulent behavior in regards to the financial statement

of an organization, I would not deem it to be logically okay to expose myself to such a level of

risk or ethically okay to deceive people to that of what the actual financial report may actually

be; potentially running other peoples live.

In conclusion, our personal ethics impact us on a daily basis usually more than most of us

actually notice, and given the vast amount of variables that goes into considering what is

considered right or wrong, it can quickly become overwhelming. At the end of the day however,

we are presented with a choice and we have to make a decision based on what we feel is right.