Business ethics is generally a type of professionalism which is usually used in establishing moral challenges that exist in business surroundings. Usually, ethical considerations exist in every business aspect and are usually appropriate to the conduct of individuals which ultimately translate to the entire trade. Such considerations usually exist as a descriptive and also as a normative subject. The two approaches are usually differentiated in terms of corporate and academic ventures. As such, the normative aspect of are used in the corporate settings while descriptive are generally used to connote the academic effort relating to the understanding of behavior in businesses (Machan, 2007).
The reasons for adopting ethical behaviors in businesses vary from one trade to another. In most cases, the efforts are brought into play in ensuring the proper interaction of employees with the view of boosting economic or non-economic behavioral concerns within the academic and corporate spheres. The endeavor further provides a platform which is geared towards the improvement of relationship between corporations and the communities within which they operate (Jones, 2005). With reference to the foregoing, the communities around organizations depend on the ventures to provide proper and impartial services as well as information relating to the organization in particular and trading practices in general.
Within the legal profession perspective, practitioners are expected to perform their tasks with the highest level of precision and at the same time uphold ethical values. The stability of legal profession within legal systems depends, to a bigger extent, on the irreproachable performances and behavior of the entire fraternity of lawyers. Law firms therefore adopt business ethical aspects with the understanding that trust is the best aspect that helps in accomplishing the objectives of law. As such, a breach of ethics no matter how negligible it may seem leads to a breach of trust. Information on ethical breach within a legal profession has far reaching implications. For instance, if the breach occurs within a law firm, it usually obliterates trust between partners and other employees of the firm. Subsequently, the productivity of employees decline and most prominently, trust between the firm and its clients is eroded leading to loss of business (Jeffrey, 2003).
The changing societal dynamics in relation to globalization and technological advancement and the subsequent effects on the legal profession cannot be overlooked. With regard to the foregoing, and in light of other influential aspects causing change, altering the Model Rules of Professional Conduct to reflect the realities of current and future trends is imperative. A positive change would certainly ensure that lawyers serve their clients, courts and the public at large more effectively (Schneeman, 2000).
With reference to advancement in technology, most of the information and advice is exchanged in the modern legal spheres through electronic means such as emails and texts. This has proved to be an effective means of communication at the national and international levels. This means that other aspects such as lawyer-client privileges are no longer kept sorely in file cabinets but also on phones, computers and in tablets. Consequently, the links with prospective clients are also sought through social networks as well as ads. The later is usually presented in the form of ‘ pay per click’. Other aspects that would likely influence the altering of Model Rules of Professional Conduct include the fact that most non citizens increasingly want to practice in the United States and vise versa , need for a multi-jurisdictional practice which may include the increasing debate over the inclusion of non lawyers in the ownership of interests in law firms. The reality with reference to most alterations that have previously occurred in the Model Rules is that the core values regarding the legal profession now face many challenges.
Taking the foregoing as my point of departure, although some changes have been effected, there is also need to refine the Model Rules of Professional Conduct guarantee the provision of quality legal services. For instance, rule 1. 1 which relate to competence which effectively relates to ethical considerations provide in some part that, “ when using the services of nonfirm lawyers in providing legal services to a client, a lawyer also must reasonably believe that such services meet the standard of competence under this Rule.” This rule may be interpreted to suggest a situation where lawyers are expected to ensure that the task of a lawyer in a different firm was carried out proficiently. Although the obligation was deemed to have been lessened previously by substituting the expression ‘ must’ with ‘ should’ there is no much difference on the duty imposed. Consequently, it is not practically possible for a lawyer to supervise work done by another attorney in a different firm and such a duty also provides outsourcing challenges (Schneeman, 2000).
Accordingly, Rule 8. 4 which relate to professional misconduct is provided differently in different jurisdictions. The same should be altered to ensure that it achieves a general outlook. The rule further provides information relating to discipline in relation to some forms of misconduct while ignoring others. Paragraph (b) for instance provides for offenses which relate to moral turpitude. The interpretation of the paragraph may lead to inclusion of offenses consisting personal morality for instance adultery which may have no link to fitness in the practice of law. As such, although a lawyer is liable to criminal law in its entirety the same should be reflected to offenses committed and which indicate lack of appropriate personality to legal practice.
Machan, T. R. (2007). The morality of business: AProfession of Human Wealthcare. Boston: Springer.
Jeffrey Pfeffer, (2003). “ Business and the Spirit: Management Practices That Sustain Values,” Handbook of Workplace Spirituality and Organizational Performance, eds. R. A. Giacolone and C. L. Jurkiewicz. New York: M. E. Sharpe Press, 29-45.
Ulrich, D. and Smallwood, N. (2003). Why the Bottom Line Isn’t! How to Build Value Through People and Organization. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
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