Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Road to Downfall: The Most Common Unethical Business Practices

Going by the rules and ethics is the ideal way of doing business. Unfortunately, making big profits as much as possible is the ultimate objective of small startups and big multinational corporations so achieving business success may conflict these two schools of thought. It is competitive and cutthroat out there. Some business owners and entrepreneurs following business ethics by the books won’t get you far so they try to “bend the rules.” On the other hand, unethical businesses try to outwit, outplay, and outlast their competition through shady business practices like bribery and black propaganda. These unfair business strategies may work but it will irrevocably ruin a business’ reputation. Find a good business and franchise opportunity through Aussie-friendly business search site - Odusee.

Source: Wikipedia.org

Even the so-called “world’s greatest newspaper” News of the World even fell back to earth after doing business for over 160 years because of their controversial business practices that included the paedophile shame campaign, phone hacking, the fake ‘sheikh’ cricket scandal, links to police corruption, and a litany of libel actions. These unwanted publicities have tarnished the reputation of this once-famous publication. Following the footsteps of Enron and WorldCom, Rupert Murdoch’s publication is just one of the many that fell out of the wayside. Here are the most common unethical business practices:

Business Espionage

Source: businesssecurity.net

Lifted from the pages of Ian Fleming’s James Bond, there are many spies in the world of business hoping sift out important corporate trade secrets that may benefit their own business agendas. Some of them pretend to be customers or clients but interested in the important details on how you run and manage your business.

Cold Treatment

Source: smallbiztrends.com

Professional and confidential communication line is essential in business transactions and correspondences but not answering clients and customers after initial e-mail exchanges, telephone conversations, and business information sharing is not a good business practice. Making excuses of being out of the office for “business trips” and other alibis.

Fake Customer Testimonials

Source: blog.customerlobby.com

Getting favourable reviews and testimonials can boost business reputation and reliability. No wonder, some businesses fake it to gain advantage over the competitors. Promoting that their products and services is effective through made-up “customer success stories” is an unethical business practice because it is just blatantly duping customers into buying it.

Promising Something New and Better

Source: searchenginewatch.com

Some companies want to be seen as hip, innovative, and trendsetter by promising new and better products and services. Many purported revolutionary products and services that are promised to outdo everything by the competition may be just the same thing they do but with a different packaging and branding. Perhaps, some are just empty promises and products of imagination.

Shady Contracts and Delinquent Payments

Source: watsonbusinesslaw.com

Contracts are important business documents and changing it frequently and not paying the dues agreed upon are mortal sins in business transactions. Unfortunately, settling business debts may take a while as every legal action may drag your resources with it. You can hire lawyers and debt collection agents to enforce the contract but don’t expect to get it right away.

Dubious Funding Claims

Source: blog.al.com

Being perceived as a financially-stable company is enough to convince most investors and clients to do business but making dubious funding claims is a whole different story. An unethical business would do it in order to convince the board directors that the finances are in order and there is a steady capital infusion from investors. Unfortunately, many companies go bankrupt when playing this hide and seek game of financial management.

Bad Use of Stock Options

Source: wfu.edu

Many small businesses and start-up companies would use stock option grants as payment for services. But using it in a different way may bring your company into trouble and possible lawsuits over contractual obligations and unethical business conveyances.

Breach of Contract

Source: schecterlaw.com

There is no better way to describe bad business practices as breach of contract. Getting a long-term commitment from a client and investors is a big boost to your company’s business profile but terminating a contract abruptly for made up reasons can spark legal actions from them.

Faulty Bidding Process
source: proteantech.net


If a selection has been made, what is the point of having a bidding process with different suppliers? Making potential clients as column fodders to make it look like a fair selection is sounding like one of the typical unethical business examples and corrupt practices that some businesses do.

Source: http://bizdev.blog.extendance.com/2006/06/03/the-top-10-most-common-unethical-business-practices/

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