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Critical Analysis of CSR: Anglo-American and Primark

Respond to the following, using Anglo-American and Primark as examples:

1) Describe what is meant by ethical business behavior;

2) Describe how these two companies - Anglo-American and Primark - apply ethics in practice;

3) Discuss the costs and benefits to an organization when that organization behaves ethically.

4) Choose one component of Svennson & Woods' model (found in the journal article "A Model of Business Ethics"), and discuss how your chosen component is relevant for Anglo-American and/or Primark. For example, you might choose "external stakeholder relationships" (page 314), and discuss how Anglo-American benefits from its positive stakeholder relationships (see page 4 of the Anglo-American case study).

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In reviewing both Anglo-American and Primark companies along with reading the information contained in "A model of Business Ethics", the meaning of ethical business behavior is a culmination of many commitments that corporations must embrace in order to satisfy their stakeholders, employees, and also contribute to society (Fraedrich, 1992).

Ethical business behavior refers to an organizations actions and policies that are synergetic with "doing the right thing" (Sethi, 2003). Similar to the inherent laws of society that man has established that promote specific behaviors and actions that are deemed appropriate to build trust and relationships that last, it is similar in corporations. In order to operate ethically, organizations must also establish a clearly defined set of principles and a culture of ethical compliance that builds trust and confidence with their employees and their customers (Paine, 1994).

Some of the common themes seen in organizations which practice ethical business behavior are policies and practices that aggressively pursue fairness and equality across their global operations with a keen focus on the quality of life of their workforce. Also, organizations that promote ethical business behavior will take an active role in the communities and regions in which they operate and demonstrate good corporate social responsibility, and they will always taking responsibility for their actions. Ethical organizations will proactively look for creative ways to better society and the environment in which they operate (McCall, 2002).

Anglo-American and Primark are two companies that provide excellent strategies for practicing strong ethical business behaviors. Although both companies are in dramatically different industries, the fundamentals of their message of ethical compliance are similar in nature. Let's examine Anglo-American's operations first.

Anglo-American is a publically limited company in the UK that operates on a global scale (www.times100.uk.co/Anglo). Anglo American prides itself as a world leader in agriculture and mining operations. As one of the world's leading mining companies with operations across Africa and Europe as well as other areas, Anglo American employees thousands of workers across the globe and its overall operations have a direct impact on the world's economy (www.times100.uk.co/Anglo).

Due to the impacts that the mining and agriculture industry have on the environment and communities in which Anglo American operates, it is imperative to their business model that the company actively pursues ethical business practices and corporate social responsibility in order to gain public acceptance or a "social license" that allows for the granting of the contracts it acquires (www.times100.uk.co/Anglo).

In order to clearly define the company's strategy as it pertains to ethical behavior and corporate responsibility, Anglo American has established what it calls "Good Citizenship", which is its specific set of core principles and values. These principles are established through a process in which Anglo American engages their ...

Solution Summary

Some of the common themes seen in organizations which practice ethical business behavior are policies and practices that aggressively pursue fairness and equality across their global operations with a keen focus on the quality of life of their workforce. Also, organizations that promote ethical business behavior will take an active role in the communities and regions in which they operate and demonstrate good corporate social responsibility, and they will always taking responsibility for their actions. Ethical organizations will proactively look for creative ways to better society and the environment in which they operate (McCall, 2002).

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