The Importance of Ethic and Social Responsibilities to Business Organization

The Importance of Ethic and Social Responsibilities to Business Organization

Social Responsibilities and Its Concept –  Since ethical and social responsibilities are becoming too popular, sterm in business and therefore critical look into the meaning of ethics and social responsibilities is vital to this work at hand. order to understand the meaning of this term, we have to know first the meaning of ethics.      The word “ Ethics” is surd that deals with morals or the standards of behaviour, which concerns the principles of rights and wrong in human behaviour.     

In every profession, there is rules and code of conducts guiding its members, e.g. the Army, Police, Lawyers, Businessmen etc. ethical codes can be written or unwritten. This rules are known to the members of the profession. To be ethical is to abide by these rules in our dealing with others. While unethical behaviour is that which fails below the standards or expectations. As twin concepts ethical and social responsibilities are they focus on the world conscience of business.

The concepts of ethical responsibilities to do with those issue that concern businessmen. Loyalty to their organizations as well as this customer.  While social responsibility has to do with them being good to their customers as well as their customers. Ethical has to do with thousand issues that concern businessmen loyalty to their organizations as well as their customers. While social responsibilities has to do with the duties or obligations of businessmen to the problems, interest and needs of the society at large. It is carrying out the moral duties or obligations of the businessmen or business to the society.

From this explanation above the distinction between ethical and social responsibilities, tells us that ethical responsibilities has to do with business people’s obligation to be true to their customers as well as their organization, social responsibilities has to do with their  being good to the society as well as their customers. But concepts are appeals to the conscience of business people to the intent that they might meet the expectations of those who are affected by their sections.

Today, business organization is constantly changing an is surrounded by thousands of environments. An organization can respond to its environment on any of these two (2) ways. It can change the environment It can adjust to the environment Hicks and Gullet (1981); says that business is a changing society. Therefore a good organization knows that its obligations/objectives are and knows which environmental factors are affecting it in its progress. Therefore business organization should have a changing social role, which enable it to adopt and shape its environment, for their mutual benefit.

Further important views Hicks and Gullet (1981) in that business must play an active social role in the society in which its functions. Infact this is the result of business success. Many business are large and powerful economically, therefore their decisions and polities have vital impact on the society. The more the changes in economic growth of business the more the society expects from that organization. The equation should always balance. Therefore any business organization that wishes to hold on to its power must, therefore, be sure that it is exercising on equivalent amount of changing social role to the society.

According to Davis and Robert (1980) for the reasons the growing role of social responsibilities is: The changing needs of people’s business has done organizing good job of meeting economic needs in the society. Now social expectations of people must be met as well. The changing role of management. As the ownership and management of business have been separated. Managers have come to see owners as only one o the groups they must serve. The management role is changing from that of ownership to trusteeship for arises range of clants.  The changing business and economic system. Armies have grown large and powerful in our society. Perfect competition as observed by the economist Adam Smith two centuries ago is an accurate in economic power means in increase in social responsibilities to the society.  The changing of the society: modern society is much more inter department than as it was. Actions of business can influence life styles of large segments of society. This means business can influence employees satisfaction availability of goods and services to consumers, their economic health of the nation and the qualify of our environment. Society does not only expect economic performance from business they also expect social interest groups in the society pressing their demands upon business. This has eventually led to the changing social role of business organizations.


Government takes time to verify and supervise the business activities of organization, they play important role in the implementation of the ethics and social responsibilities by business and their organization e.g. the registration of companies, which are carried out by the corporate affairs commission. Even the standard organization of Nigeria makes sure that products are of good quality and standards set by government. There is no doubt that government is dedicated to improving the standard of living and comports of the people. Therefore it will not compromise with any unethical and unserious business organization. Government sometimes lends by providing inceptive and subsides to business organization such as grants, loans, electricity water and infrastructure. Therefore, government laws concerning ethic sand social responsibilities of business organization are gread towards protecting the properties.

Government laws in Nigeria are meant to protect existing and infact companies, and also to make them ethically and socially moral. Any violating of this law pays the price of closure or awarding tp damages. The company acts in Nigeria e.g. the companies act of Act of 1968, are rules governing business activities in Nigeria. Government legislation has been passed in a number of areas of requiring business and other organizations to fulfill certain so cal responsibilities. Such are regulations concerning fair employment practices, pollution control, and job safety and pension reform. While cornering any corporate matter.

Therefore, government business organization live of to the expectations of being ethical socially responsible to the society they operate and do business organization who want to continue in business to obey governmental laws concerning them. As government is ready to punish any default business entity. Since no business is set to run at least to be victim of the law and governments, but to make target towards there responsibilities to the government, people security, environment and the country as a whole.


Organization is made up of different departments and marketing departments in one of the most important within an organization.  Marketing in the departments is one of contact with the consumers. And as such understand the problem of consumers and the society. Over the years marketing was developed from production concept, which centers on the consumer as the reason for being in business. The marketing constants calls for business orientation and satisfaction. This is why consumers is said to be always right. Consumer is the king. In marketing consumer is very important. That is why the codes of ethics in marketing should be pick rightly followed.

The new innovation in making today in the societal marketing concept, which does not only focus in consumer’s satisfaction alone but the society at large. This concept makes sure that marketers salesmen and businessmen live up to their ethics and social responsibilities to their consumers and the society. Ethics of marketing are those rules that doesn’t allow a marketer to be franstlent or unethical in his behaviour and activities.

Some of the ethics of marketing are:

A marketer must ensure that the customers get the maximum utility or satisfaction from his products.

(2) A marketer should not frustrate the consumer by withholding or diverting the supplies meant for them e.g. petroleum products They must not market expired, dangerous, defective products. They must educate his customers or consumers on correct usage of his products. Marketers should not use any form of deceitful labeling in order to induce sales. Just to mention a few of the codes of ethics in marketing. Ethics of marketing are also applicable to the employees this means marketers must also be ethical to their employers in the originations.

They must posse’s good qualities.  Honest and loyal to their boss and supervisors They should not make secret profit or cheat their employers. They should follow the instructions of employers  Communicational of consumers or customers attitude or reactions to the employers or management board. Social responsibilities in marketing are activities aimed at contributing to the welfare of the society at large. The essence of these activities is to eliminate or reduce the problems created for larger society by business organizations operation or the consumption of its product or the improvement of the society by carrying out social responsibilities. Marketers gain and retain the favour of the consuming public. According to Edogo P.N 1905, social responsibilities o marketers include He/she must always think in terms of the impact of effect of his product in the general environment. He must not market goods that may damage the environment or endanger the lives of the people. He must not market a product that may bring about moral decadue or cause social unrest. He must think of what he can do to enrich the life of the community or contribute towards economic growth and development. He should encourage his organization to participate or contribute towards the welfare of the general public. Other areas of social responsibilities include:  Eliminating of malpractice in the market place. Discourage the use and consumption of products that impure the society.  Enhancing quality of life. Reducing environmental pollution. Supplying consumer education. Co-operation with the governmental in its efforts to increase consumers well being through better information products etc. larodge (1970) and Stanton (1954)


We are going to look into what an organization is and types of organization. An organization is defined in a number of ways. In the society of management it can refer to the structure of relationships among individuals concerned with changes or growth. Organizations are primarily complex good seeking units which in order to survive must accomplish secondary task e.g. they must maintain their internal system to co-ordinate the human side of enterprise and must adopt to shape the external environment. Appleby (1981) stress the fact that an organization is made up of: Individuals  Workers and  Management Sometimes, conflicts arose between workers and the management goal attainment. This could be solved by the theories propounded to allow for medication of interest.  It is this that Ethon Mayo and his associate saw that the human affliction man could b a reviling force and versed the industrial organization as a social as well as an economic technical system. What is of important now is that, the conflict between management and individual permit organization to perform their individual responsibilities and ethics.


Formal organization and  Informal organization According to some organizational theorist e.g. W.Brown another classifications of organizations could be profit-making organization e.g. companies. And non-profit organization e.g. government establishment.


Line organization Staff organization some times called line and staff) Functional organization  Whatever an organization perform or whatever type it is, either profit making or non-profit making, formal or informal, even if its structure is line or not it is important that the general principles of organization Appleby (1981) are:

Unit of Objectives: Every part of the organization must contribute to the attainment of the objective of the enterprise.  Span of control: Consideration is needed to find the number of persons and individuals can effectively manage. The number varies for many reasons, but a figure often quoted is that six subordinates are the largest number a person should supervise.

Delegation: Authority should be delegated as for down level as possible. Unit of command: Instructions from two or more supervisor may conflict. This is why each subordinate should have only one boss/supervisor.

Scalar Chain: Someone must have ultimate authority and a clear line of authority should be existence all the parts o the enterprise.

Responsibility: The responsibility of a subordinate to a supervisor for delegated authority is absolute and responsibility should be proportionate with amount of authority given.

Espirt de corpse: This means the spirit of ownerness among the organization.


it is vital that any business organization that carries out social responsibilities should have a way of assessing its social responsibilities. Method of assessing social responsibilities are:

Social responsibility audit  Attitude studies  Social priority  Corporate planning Social Responsibilities Audit: It is advocated by many theorist e.g. John Humble says that firms should keep as social responsibility audit in which polices in the external and internal environment of the human or firm can be verified.

Attitude Studies: This involves motoring changes in the attitude of firms, employees, shareholders customers opinions of leaders in society and government concerning social responsibilities most especially.

Social Priority Analysis: This involves analysis of social polices that are induced in organizational polices to facilitate its implementation e.g. the British steel corporation has a department of social and regional policy.

Corporate planning: is simply a formal, logical method of running a business, which is comprehensive, embracing all attitudes of an organization. Individuals are responsible for planned results. Corporate planning as a method of assessing social responsibility makes sure that an organizations social activities are performed or implemented.

THE LIMITS OF ETHICS AND SOCIAL  RESPONSIBILITIES. The aim of every business is to make profit. It should be stated here that it would be unwise for any business organization to spend all its profits and resources on social responsibilities. Business organizations should be careful as it involves finance. This is saying that a business should not run at loss and go bankrupt because it want to live up to expectations. The implementation of social responsibilities should be a management function properly analyzed and placed, so that the organization does not become unprofitable. Business organizations should cut their coat according to their sizes, when it comes to social responsibilities. Other factors that limits ethics and social responsibilities are: Ignorant in business organization Finance (insufficient funds) Lack of government control Unethical business managers Lack of planning and analyzing Dormant society Illiterate consumers


Social responsibilities of business in Nigeria are beginning to gain ground as a lot of business has adopted the doctrine of social activities to the society. Also there is no doubt that some unsociable and unethical practices is still prevalent in Nigeria. According to Ejiofor (1989) a lot of business firms do not discharge their duties to society. Apart from primary environmental problems caused by business activities in recent times, secondary growth of commercial and industrial activities of business this problems have also grown.

Furthermore, the heap of saw dust, crude oil spillage’s that polluted the water and atmosphere; all this causes danger to marine life and our circulations in the society. Also industrial protects activities that cause occupational hazards and disease in the society. Toxic waste sometimes cause agricultural livestock hazards, should business destroy the source of feeding in the society because it is carrying out its economic activities? Business is therefore at the center of these social hazards and problems. Therefore, social responsibilities of business implies that industrial or economic activities designed to contribute to economic and social growth should not at the endanger the very strive to help economically. An instance is given in Peter Ejiofor’s burk “foundations of business administration” where he sighted an instance of a company not being socially responsible and that firm was taken to court and damage awarded. Ejiofor (1980) P.52 it says On the 22nd of February 1978 the daily times (p.s) reported the award of N11, 915.67 damages by the supreme court of Nigeria against an Ikeja based textile mill for an alloged insurance by industrial waste matter which emanated from the firm” Therefore, the damages done to this company as a result of the public knowledge and damages awarded by the court is a great treat to the continuous existence and corporate image of the company. Therefore to say it all, business Nigeria should be socially responsible to the society.

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