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Financial and Strategic Management of Projects Wk11

1/ Please discuss here the importance of business and project ethics, and their impact on project performance and sustainability. Please also discussthe financial cost of poor ethical practices. In the business world ethics has become a critical success factor. Ethics can be defined as the discipline dealing with what is good and bad and with moral duty and obligation (Mirriam-webster, 2011). The use of high moral standards and ethical behavior can help a company establish a reputation that can guide the firm’s marketing and social responsibility efforts. One of the reasons Starbucks Café has become the world’s leading coffee house is due to its use of choosing suppliers that offer fair trade coffee. Fair trade coffee guarantees the farmers producing the coffee a minimum price of $1.26 per pound which is twice the wholesale price of coffee worldwide. Ethics must be considered by project managers in their planning for projects. A project that has a good budget, reasonable time allocation, and all the necessary resources to complete a project successfully can fail due to a lack of ethics among the team players. A case study of a firm that went form market leader to becoming at the time the biggest bankruptcy in United States history due to a lack of ethics in the Enron scandal. 2/ Please provide specific examples of good or bad corporate social responsibility, and especially as it is related to project management. Will it add value for the company, or detract from it. Project management is very important towards the success of a multinational corporation. Back in the late 1990’s Nike Corporation faced some serious problems due to the lack of ethical conduct of the project managers overseeing the foreign manufacturing operations of Nike. The firm lost millions of dollars in revenues due to the bad publicity from the revelation that Nike was running sweatshop manufacturing operations. During the past decade the business world has realized the importance of corporate social responsibility. Changes in customer tastes and expectations have made companies producing green products one the fastest growing industries in the United States and abroad. For instance in the car industry automobiles that used hybrid or electric technologies have soaring demands in the marketplace. In 2010 the total sales of hybrid vehicles in the United States were 28,592 which accounts for about 2.5% of total auto sales in the industry (Hybridcars, 2011). 3/ Please discuss the financial, social and environmental dimensions of project sustainability. Please include as many real world examples as you can, but may use case studies if needed. A project manager has to take into consideration the environmental impact of a project. During the past century the industrial world has caused great damage to the environment due to pollution its activities have caused. Global warming, deforestation, and food scarcity are some of the problems our society faces in the coming decades. A financial strategy that can be used to give back to the community is donating a fixed percentage of the revenues of a firm. A donation of 1% can make a lot of difference when a company generates over $1 billion in sales yearly. The social aspect must be also evaluated by a project manager. If a project manager has a project that involves interaction with a local community it is imperative for that project manager to take actions to eliminate the possibility of any language communication barriers (Schermerhorn, Hunt, Osborn, 2003). The culture of a country can also deeply affect the success of a project or business venture. For instance hamburger chains in India have very little chance of success since the cow is considered a sacred animal in India. ( (2011). December 2010 Dashboard: Year End Rally. Retrieved August 13, 2011 from (2011). Ethics. Retrieved August 13, 2011 from Shermerhorn, J., Hunt, J., Osborn, R. (2003). Organizational Behavior (8th ed.). New York: John Wiley amp. Sons.