CEO Haggett’s unethical behavior deserved the outcome
As the CEO of BIW Haggett should be mainly responsible for the impropriety. As mentioned above in question 1, I agree with the idea that what CEO Haggett had done was of great seriousness in that situation. Because possession of such confidential information about a competitor was banned as prescribed clearly in the agreement of DII and as the CEO of BIW Haggett must be expected to know this. It’s his decision that started the whole issue and risked the company that had 10,400 employees.
Honesty is rule no.1. After Mr. Fitzgerald ordered to destroy the copies, Mr. Haggett did not admit the existence of copies of the confidential papers to the navy officials though he did admit he had made an “inappropriate business-ethics decision”. Even his cheating was understandable (if he did not cheat, he won’t get a chance to stay in the company), but he compromised the company’s credibility by cheating the navy officials. Honesty is precious because once your lie is discovered by someone; you lose the trust that has been built in all along on her. As for the Mr. Haggett’s case he had been put in a very passive position when Mr. Fitzgerald went against him. And his dishonesty finally sentenced the termination of him.
Resignation kept Mr. Haggett’s dignity. Let’s put it this way, suppose Mr. Haggett is sustained as CEO or demoted to be a senior executive, how embarrassed it is for him when from time to time employees will speak his stupid decision behind his back and how could he tell his subordinates to be honest as everyone knows his dishonesty. So perhaps it is best for him to leave the company and teach a good lesson for those who still in BIW to think much of business ethics.
Other executives could avoid the resignation punishment
They just did their job. In the employees’ perspective what the two executives had done was proactively fulfilling what was required of them to do when their CEO gave them some important information. What’s more it’s understandable to say that they were not good executives if they knew nothing about the content of the papers hours after they were provided the information. It’s most probably that later in the afternoon CEO Haggett would ask them how they valued the papers in the technical perspective if President Fitzgerald had not shown up to disturb the process. Obedience to management is a virtue and ethics is another, whoever was placed in that spot in such an emergency situation and CEO had clear stated his decision by his behavior (ordered to copy the documents), choosing to modeling the data to make a brief report to CEO when he came back was not so bad a decision.
Firing them will lead to trust crisis and low morale. If the two executive had been dismissed because of their proactive work attitude then the employees would get confused about their role in work. Did they add ethical examination into their roles’ functions? Wasn’t it contrary to the obedience to authority view? If they made assessments to every order they received from the immediate managers the company will be in low efficiency. Fairly speaking as an employee doubting the management’s order is not practical. Even the two executives did get fired the other employees can’t make a different choice to go against CEO if that similar case happens again, one of the possible effect of dismissing the executive will be seriously jeopardizing the employees’ morale because they may lose their jobs by doing their job well.
Core of corporate responsibility rests in the value-base leadership as stated in the figure 1 of the assignment I question 2. Responsibility of ethical issue should be rested in the ones who make the decision not the ones who carry it out. It’s a shame to blame on employees whose carrier life rely the management not to disobey the management’s order in order to protect the ethics that can not provide with them salary to feed their children.