The issue of business ethics has been a much discussed issue in the business world, and the term “socially responsable” has been very much a prize that many firms seek to achieve under the expectation that it will increase sales, though most cases showed that they do not necessarily lead to this result. In my opinion its pointless and it should not be acompany‘s goal to be socially responsible.
Its not that I want companies to run rampant and disregard the environment and the communities that surround their buildings and factories; no this is not the point I am trying to say. Companies as they are now in terms of the ideology they hold and they are expected to hold, which is profit maximization, should not pursue the aforementioned goal. The goal of profit maximization means that a company should maximize its shareholders profits within the “legal restrictions” of the country in which they operate. The emphasis is on legal restrictions because this is the solution that should be considered to deal with companies irresponsibility, not by calling for companies to be ethical, the main concept that companies operate under in capitalism is self-interest or more accurately greed which is in itself is unethical. The other solution would be a change of the company’s ideology.
Expecting companies to venture into a project that endangers its main goal (profit maximization) and its survivability through its high cost and questionable profit result, a venture that risks losing competitiveness and a market of pure competition is simply a crazy thing to do. Issuing laws would level the playing field, all companies are forced to be environmentally responsible, thus none can be more competitive than other because one is responsible and the other is not.
But no this is not going to happen because there is international competition; if one country decides to establish laws that will impose restrictions on the activities of its companies others are not bound to do so, thus the assumed country may lose competitiveness in the international market, its position may not necessarily diminish greatly, but none the less will be damaged. This is a risk most if not all developed countries are not willing to take, since in the quarrel between principle and money, money always wins, especially in our current times