social responsibilities of business and business ethics.

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social responsibilities of business and business ethics. its for class 11th commerce subject :- business studies.

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A business enterprise should do business and earn money in ways that fulfill the expectations of the society. Every individual living in society has certain obligations towards society. He has to respect social values and norms of behaviour. A business enterprise is permitted by society to carry on industrial or commercial activities and thereby earn profits. But it is obligatory on part of the business enterprise not to do anything, that is undesirable from society’s point of view. Manufacture and sale of adulterated goods, making deceptive advertisements, not paying taxes which are due, polluting the environment and exploiting workers are some examples of socially undesirable practices which may increase the profit of enterprises but which have adverse effect on society at large. On the other hand, supplying good quality goods, creating healthy working conditions, honestly paying taxes prevention/installing pollution devices in the factory, and sincerely attending to customer complaints are examples of socially desirable practices which improve the image of enterprises and also make them profitable. In fact, it is through socially responsible and ethically upright behaviour that business enterprises can get durable success.

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(i) Justification for existence and growth (ii) Long-term interest of the firm: (iii) Avoidance of government regulation: . (iv) Maintenance of society: (v) Availability of resources with business: (vi) Converting problems into opportunities: vii) Better environment for doing business: (viii) Holding business responsible for social problems:

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(i) Violation of profit maximisation objective: According to this argument, business exists only for profit maximisation. Therefore, any talk of social responsibility is against this objective. In fact, business can best fulfill its social responsibility if it maximises profits through increased efficiency and reduced costs. (ii) Burden on consumers: It is argued that social responsibilities like pollution control and environmental protection are very costly and often require huge financial investments. In such circumstances, businessmen are likely to simply shift this burden of social responsibility by charging higher prices from the consumers instead of bearing it themselves. Therefore, it is unfair to tax the consumers in the name of social responsibility.

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(iii) Lack of social skills: All social problems cannot be solved the way business problems are solved. In fact, businessmen do not have the necessary understanding and training to solve social problems. Therefore, according to this argument, social problems should be solved by other specialised agencies. (iv) Lack of broad public support: Here the argument is that the public in general does not like business involvement or interference in social programmes. Therefore, business cannot operate successfully because of lack of public confidence and cooperation in solving social problems.

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(i) Threat of public regulation: (ii) Pressure of labour movement: iii) Impact of consumer consciousness: (iv) Development of social standard for business: (v) Development of business education: (vi) Relationship between social interest and business interest: (vii) Development of professional, managerial class:

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(a) Economic responsibility: A business enterprise is basically an economic entity and, therefore, its primary social responsibility is economic i.e., produce goods and services that society wants and sell them at a profit. There is little discretion in performing this responsibility. (b) Legal responsibility: Every business has a responsibility to operate within the laws of the land. Since these laws are meant for the good of the society, a law abiding enterprise is a socially responsible enterprise as well.

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(c) Ethical responsibility: This includes the behaviour of the firm that is expected by society but not codified in law. For example, respecting the religious sentiments and dignity of people while advertising for a product. There is an element of voluntary action in performing this responsibility. (d) Discretionary responsibility. This refers to purely voluntary obligation that an enterprise assumes, for instance, providing charitable contributions to educational institutions or helping the affected people during floods or earthquakes. It is the responsibility of the company management to safeguard the capital investment by avoiding speculative activity and undertaking only healthy business ventures which give good returns on investment.

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(i) Responsibility towards the shareholders or owners: A business enterprise has the responsibility to provide a fair return to the shareholders or owners on their capital investment and to ensure the safety of such investment. The corporate enterprise on a company form of organisation must also provide the shareholders with regular, accurate and full information about its working as well as schemes of future growth. (ii) Responsibility towards the workers: Management of an enterprise is also responsible for providing opportunities to the workers for meaningful work. It should try to create the right kind of working conditions so that it can win the cooperation of workers. The enterprise must respect the democratic rights of the workers to form unions. The worker must also be ensured of a fair wage and a fair deal from the management.

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(iii) Responsibility towards the consumers: Supply of right quality and quantity of goods and services to consumers at reasonable prices constitutes the responsibility of an enterprise toward its customers. The enterprise must take proper precaution against adulteration, poor quality, lack of desired service and courtesy to customers, misleading and dishonest advertising, and so on. They must also have the right of information about the product, the company and other matters having a bearing on their purchasing decision. (iv) Responsibility towards the government and community: An enterprise must respect the laws of the country and pay taxes regularly and honestly. It must behave as a good citizen and act according to the well accepted values of the society. It must protect the natural environment and should avoid bad, effluent, smoky chimneys, ugly buildings dirty working conditions. It must also develop a proper image in society through

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Protection of the environment is a serious issue that confronts business managers and decision makers. The environment is defined as the totality of man’s surroundings — both natural and man-made. These surroundings are also in the nature of resources, that are useful for human life. The resources may also be called natural resources like land, water, air, fauna and flora and raw materials; or man-made resources such as cultural heritage, socioeconomic institutions and the people. It is widely recognised that the quality of the environment is fast deteriorating particularly due to industrial activity. This is a common sight around major cities like Kanpur, Jaipur, Delhi,

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It must be recognised that all sectors of our society viz., industry, government, agriculture, mining, energy, transportation, construction, and consumers generate waste. Wastes contain pollutants which are the materials of chemicals that have been discarded during the process of production or consumption. Pollution is caused by these pollutants which are released into the environment beyond its assimilation capacity. Among the various sources of pollution, industry is a major generator of waste in terms of both its quantity and toxicity. Business activities such as production, distribution, transport, storage, consumption of goods and services are known to be the most critical sources

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(i) Air pollution: Air pollution is the result of a combination of factors which lowers the air quality. It is mainly due to carbon monoxide emitted by automobiles which contributes to air pollution. Similarly, smoke and other chemicals from manufacturing plants pollute the air. Resultant air pollution has created a hole in the ozone layer leading to dangerous warming of the earth. (ii) Water pollution: Water becomes polluted primarily from chemical and waste dumping. For years, business enterprises have been dumping waste into rivers, streams and lakes with little regard for the consequences. Water pollution has led to the death of several animals and posed a serious threat to human life.

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(iii) Land pollution: Dumping of toxic wastes on land causes land pollution. This damages the quality of land making it unfit for agriculture or plantation. Restoring the quality of the land that has already been damaged is a big problem. (iv) Noise pollution: Noise caused by the running of factories and vehicles is not merely a source of annoyance but is also a serious health hazard. Noise pollution can be responsible for many diseases like loss of hearing, malfunctioning of the heart and mental disorder.

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(i) A definite commitment by top management of the enterprise to create, maintain and develop work culture for environmental protection and pollution prevention. (ii) Ensuring that commitment to environmental protection is shared throughout the enterprise by all divisions and employees. (iii) Developing clear-cut policies and programmes for purchasing good quality raw materials, employing superior technology, using scientific techniques of disposal and treatment of wastes and developing employee skills for the purpose of pollution control. (iv) Complying with the laws and regulations enacted by the Government for prevention of pollution. (v) Participation in government programmes relating to management of hazardous substances, clearing up of polluted rivers, plantation of trees, and checking deforestation. (vi) Periodical assessment of pollution control programmes in terms of costs and benefits so as to increase the progress with respect to environmental protection. (vii) Arranging educational workshops and training materials to share technical information and experience with suppliers, dealers and customers to get them actively involved in pollution control programmes.

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(i) Top management commitment: (ii) Publication of a ‘Code (iii) Establishment of compliance mechanisms: (iv) Involving employees at all levels: (v) Measuring results:

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