The Ethics Of Virtue Ethics In The Mattel Case

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Introduction As a society, focusing on what is right and ethical is a priority. Virtue ethics includes “certain ideals for which people should strive and allow complete growth of humanity” (Velasquez, et al., 2008). Virtues are “attributes we have”, and include, fairness, self-control, honesty and integrity (Ruiz & Lluesma, 2014) . There are numerous instances in which people should apply appropriate virtues to ensure ethical behavior is being practiced. Additionally, corporations should appropriately use virtues to protect employees, and customers. Corporations need to “practice ethical leadership to understand what is right or wrong (Bai & Morris, 2014). An article on Mattel, a leading toy company, shows several circumstances in which the …show more content…
These circumstances have violated several virtues. One major virtue that has been violated by Mattel is fairness. In Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, fairness is defined as "agreeing with what is right or wrong” (Merriam Webster, 2016). In several instances, Mattel failed to be fair to employees, and their code of conduct. For example, the article states that employees at some Mattel locations were forced to work "excessive hours, and in extreme conditions" (Sethi et al., 2011). Furthermore, the article (2011) suggests that workers were paid unfair wages that were much lower than the minimum wage requirement. The article “Leadership and Virtue Ethics” states that unethical behavior has been responsible for numerous disgraces throughout the business world (Bai & Morris, 2014). According to the Mattel case article, one of the main issues the Mattel Corporation had was a major recall on millions of toys (Sethi, et al., 2011). While this issue was occurring, there was an increase in public concern for unethical and dangerous circumstances for which workers were subjected. The article (2011) suggests that there was worker exploitation and harmful environments within production in poorer countries. The Mattel factory in Indonesia showed unfair treatment of employees in that underaged workers were hired, and they were forced to work extended hours, with extreme overtime (Sethi, et al., 2011). …show more content…
In the Merriam-Webster dictionary, integrity is defined as “being honest and fair” (Merriam-Webster, 2016). Furthermore, integrity can be defined as a “code of morals and values” (Merriam-Webster, 2016). The Mattel case paper represents several instances where the company lacked integrity. Mattel has numerous circumstances in which the employees were not treated fairly, did not have adequate working environments, and were treated like sweatshops. In multiple factories, employees were underpaid, worked excessive hours, and were in harmful environments (Sethi, et al., 2011). Furthermore, Mattel was unfair to employees when the organization created the codes of conduct, but were not effectively making an effort to “improve and monitor working conditions” (Sethi, et al., 2011). These behaviors violate the integrity of Mattel as a whole in that the organization does not seem to uphold the same working conditions in every factory location. For example, Mattel’s integrity is in question when the company stated that the auditors overreacted on conditions in factories located in Mexico (Sethi, et al., 2011). Instead of questioning the auditors, Mattel should have went directly to the location, observed it, and then fixed the issues. The organization lacked honesty in this instance because it insisted that the issues found were not

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