Hank Thaler: Ethics of Disclosure (B)

by: Andrew Hoffman

Publication Date: April 16, 2010
Length: 4 pages
Product ID#: 1-429-041

Core Disciplines: Ethics

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Teaching Note

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This mini-case follows up Hank Thaler (A). It describes the decision made by the CEO of hypothetical Big Bucks Inc., Hank Thaler, about whether or not to inform his employees of the secret sale of the company. Hank’s reasoning behind his decision as well as its consequences are explained. The case also challenges students to consider whether they would make the same decision that Hank did, if they knew the consequences that would follow.

Teaching Objectives

After reading and discussing the material, students should:

  • Ethical issues are often in the category of right versus right dilemmas, where both options have positive aspects.
  • Ethical reasoning requires that we work through the multiple elements of a right versus right dilemma.
  • Ethical dilemmas are often complicated by the fact that there are a variety of stakeholders in an organization that can have competing interests.
  • Behaving ethically is not always easy, and consequences can be steep.