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ECG: Review ethical standards, relevant laws for comprehensive code of conduct

During your first month at ECG, you convene a meeting of the Ethics Review Committee to review a client situation. The situation is straightforward: An ECG partner has not been diligent in fulfilling contractual obligations for a business strategy engagement, which requires timely response because the final presentation to the client will occur in a matter of weeks. The partner did not encourage the consulting team to conduct some very critical market research and analysis of a new business opportunity for a long-standing client. Instead, data was used from a similar study done 3 years ago while the partner was employed by another consulting firm. This data, which overstates the current market opportunity, was shared with the client during an interim presentation along with a recommendation to consider a strategic move into the business market. The presentation could influence the client's decision to invest significant resources into a new venture that is not as appealing strategically or financially now as it was in the past.

There are both ethical and potentially legal issues related to this matter. As the Ethics Review Committee assesses the situation and determines a plan of action, it must take into account the implications of the partner's actions for the client and for ECG. There are currently few ethical policies to guide the group. If the issue becomes more widely known, business factors, inherent risks with certain responses to this situation, the possible loss of a key client, questions about firm's credibility, and the potential negative affect to the firm's upcoming IPO must also be considered.

Meet with the Ethics Review Committee on the Discussion Board to determine how this problem can be addressed through the following:

Consider the relative values of proactive and reactive thinking in determining an action plan.
Define critical steps in the decision-making process.
Determine considerations in the decision-making process.
Identify a creative, innovative, and optimal solution to the problem with appropriate justification.
Outline the expected organizational impact.

Course scenario: Please view posting ID #415124 at this link https://brainmass.com/business/accounting-business-analysis-financial-reporting/415124 for the full case study. No further download is necessary.

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Solution Preview

Ethical issues and code of conduct in an organization are crucial to its success in the external environment. These issues affect the company's public image, the firm's credibility, possible loss of clients when negative image is portrayed to the corporate and general public. Development and implementation of sound codes of ethics by a company to its employees will build a strong foundation in the company's current and future business transactions.

Ethical issues

The field of ethics normally involves defending, recommending and systematizing concepts or codes of wrong or right behavior in a corporation. These concepts can be based on social, moral or legal standards that regulate wrong and right conduct, articulating good habits that should be acquired by the company's personnel or partners, to follow duties or else bear consequences of conduct through laid down measures and rules (Bridges, 2002).

The compliance officer for Expert Consulting Group (ECG) has convened a meeting with the Ethics Review Committee to discuss the critical matter pertaining to one of its partners for not dealing in diligence by fulfilling the contractual obligations to a client's business strategy engagement. The strategy engagement presentation was not as viable in the market because of the data used. This has posed a critical ethical and legal issue to ECG and requires urgent attention to safeguard its interests. The compliance officer has to approach the issue in a proactive and reactive thinking response by attempting to find alternate solutions and their possible outcomes of the potential threat.

Implications that might be brought by the ECG's partner could be detrimental to the consulting in its goals and the negotiation deal with Government Alliance Company. The officer and the Ethics Review team must think ahead and plan to avert the looming disaster. A legal issue that may arise in this scenario would be data mining. The partner had used previous data from a previous partnership. ...

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