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You’re Fired
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Q. A few months ago I hired a woman who is a very nice, very good person, but just hasn’t mastered the work. She costs me more than she is worth. Now that business has slowed, can I take this opportunity to “trim the workforce” and lay her off? A. It is generally ethical to […]
Marketing Lite Doctorates
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Q. I’m a recruiter for a local college which gives non-accredited degrees based on our courses, standard exams, and life experience evaluations. Our students are informed that our bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees are not recognized, but I am concerned that graduates may be using these degrees to deceive their own employers or clients. Do […]
Bank Error in Your Favor-Collect $200
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Q. Sometimes a customer makes an error and overpays. Do I have to let him know? What if he owes me money too because of merchandise he never paid for? A. Monopoly fans who recognize the “Community Chest” card in the headline of this column know that some players don’t see anything wrong with profiting […]
I Quit
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Q. I’ve decided to leave my current job to work in a different field. If I leave my boss only two weeks notice, as the contract requires, he’ll be in a really tight spot. But I’m afraid that if I let him know too far in advance, I’ll get less out of work.  A. A […]
Downsizing Dilemmas
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Q. If my job is to help increase the profitability of a company, should I try to find ways to restructure the company so as to get by with the fewest number of employees? Should I be trying to fire as many people as possible, or just enough to make the company reasonably profitable?  A. […]
Taking a Chance on Gambling
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Q. Our youth group is always looking for sustainable sources of funding. In our city, non-profit organizations are allowed to host gambling activities on a limited basis. Is this an ethical way of raising money for a worthy cause?  A. Many religious organizations have learned that games like bingo can be a big help in […]
Is Cheers Ethical
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Q. Is it okay to be a proprietor of bar or pub? Can I put in poker machines too?  A. A look at some distinctive Jewish names may give us a hint to Judaism’s attitude towards this line of business. Common names like Schenker (bartender), Kretschmer (tavern keeper), Bronfman (whiskey seller), Breuer (brewer) and others […]
The Black Truth About White Lies
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Q. I’m going with my twelve-year-old son to buy him a bike, giving me the perfect “alibi” to go out and get my wife a surprise birthday present. When we get home, my wife is sure to ask, “What took so long?” Normally I’d make up a “white lie” in order to keep the surprise, […]
Getting Undeserved Goodwill
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Q. Even though my company doesn’t pay workers for overtime, it still records times of arrival and departure at the office. If I step out in the middle of the day for errands, it looks like I worked extra hours that day. But even though that makes me look good, the company doesn’t really lose […]
Intrusive Sales Pitches
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Q. If I pick up the phone and hear a telemarketer, do I have to listen? If I am too timid to tell her that I’m not interested, can I just hang up? And what about the salesperson herself – isn’t she guilty of invading my privacy? A. Your question illustrates that many of our […]