“Business ethics is grounded on a concept called stakeholders which describes all the various people/groups who are affected by a decision, thereby imposing responsibility on the stakeholder for the consequences of the decision. The below picture illustrates the concept in a way we can all identify with.
This young boy’s decision to put his head in the opening of a plastic chair had wide ranging effects on lots of people – only some of whom are pictured. The maintenance man, the nurse, and the principal (or teacher). Probably a parent is on the way, affecting his or her co-workers and possibly customers due to the unexpected absence. The class was disrupted and all students affected. But it doesn’t stop there, the head in chair decision resulted in the maintenance man’s hacksaw decision which could prove disastrous if the blade snaps on the rigid plastic chair.
In your workplace and in our homes, the reverberations of our choices are dramatic and extensive — and largely predictable. Thus, we are accountable for the consequences of our choices. Thus, even in seemingly small things, be thoughtful because what we do will affect lots of people.”
– Michael Josephson