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Ford Pinto - Managing Business Ethics

Essay by   •  July 9, 2011  •  Essay  •  583 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,461 Views

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Managing Business Ethics

When deciding right from wrong many ethical dilemmas come to mind. These ethical dilemmas are some of the way we make decision when approaching situation. Therefore, it is important to understand how people make decision and how their mind works when faced with dilemmas.

In fact, most people often make decision out of hastily; and they use shortcuts and heuristics, which is susceptible to biases and mistakes. The implication is that, maybe if we thought more, they will do better, but neither was the case with Ford Pinto. Now as we all know, Ford Pinto had obligation that need to be mate by a certain period of time. So the company president felt a need to amp production in planning and designing the Ford Pinto. Whereas normally the typical time span for designing a vehicle would take more than three and half years (Trevino, 2007). Ford thought by narrow there production, and some other processes with the Pinto will increase profit. So they pushed their engineers to design and produce this vehicle in only 2 years. While CEO's and managers knew there were poor safety standards, and still decide to move forward with production. Since the National Highway Traffic Administration was aware of the problem they still accepted the cost benefits, and Ford continued to manufacture, produce, and sell the Pinto while safety remained a concern.

Although Ford estimated the cost of fixing the fuel tank problem the CEO and managers continued to argue about cost benefit. While Ford felt it would be cheaper to let their customer burn whether then fixing an $11 unit on 11 million cars and 1.5 million trucks, which would estimate the cost to be only $137million a year. Whereas making this change would; essentially, save an 180 burn deaths, and 180 less burn injuries, which would also result into the cost of 2100 burned vehicles. saving lives and injuries was higher than fixing the $11 dollar part per vehicle, which would cost Ford only $137million a year.

Ford estimated that making the change in the Pinto would have an overall cost of approximately $137 million dollars. "This $11 per unit cost applied to 11 million cars and 1.5 million trucks. Ford estimated that making this $11 change would result in a total of 180 less burn deaths, 180 less serious burn injuries and 2,100 less burned vehicles. (Palmiter, 1999)" Ford used a risk/benefit analysis to argument to justify these numbers to the NHTSA.

Although, this particular engineer whom did not want his name disclosed in comments: argued with Ford corporation that the company is ran by a group of salesman, not engineers; who felt their priority is styling, not safety. Later set out to correct the growing problem; so Lou Tubben first, asked his boss with growing concerns, if he could design a presentation on gas tank safety at Ford, and later his boss gave him the go head. Why he worked hard on

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