Just like Christianity,
Islamic views on business are also contained in their holy book called the
Qur’an. The Qur’an insists on honesty in running a business. There should be no
evil motives or ill will when conducting business affairs (Beekun, 1997). Interest on loans is banned as
the Qur’an sees this as exploitation. False advertising is also banned. In
fact, a buyer can return an item he or she purchased if the seller used false
claims in selling the item. In conducting business activities, elements of
social function should be incorporated. These elements are alms and Zakat.
Measurements like weights and dosages should be correct. Goods sold should not
be illegal. Employees should be paid promptly on work done. A business should
not behave in a monopoly manner, others should have a chance to join the
market. A business should pay its debts in time and a debtor should be given
grace period if he or she is unable to pay a debt in time. Above all, business
should not interfere with a Muslim’s worship of God.
Jews base their views and
law on the Torah, their holy book. Various topics about running a business are
covered inside. It is worth noting that in the Torah, there are more laws
referred to as Mitzvot governing kashrut or fitness of one’s money than kashrut
of food. Therefore, Rabbinic literature covers these views extensively (Levine, 2000). The views can be classified as
either ethical or legal; Mussar or Halakha. They both mainly cover dishonesty.
Ethical views mainly cover honesty in business. This honesty is seen as key in
the development of character. Legal views cover a wide range of activities. Measurements
and weights should be accurate. There is to be no deception in the conduct of
business of any kind, whether monetary or verbal. A transaction can be
cancelled if it is deemed that the seller was deceptive to the buyer. False
advertising and taking advantage of someone is strictly prohibited. Workers
should be treated with respect. They in turn should not waste time at work but
instead work hard for their employers. It is also the responsibility of the
employee to blow the lid in case there is any wrongdoing happening in the work
place. The employee should report the employer to the relevant authority where
there is reasonable expectation of his or her issues addressed without
The basis of Hinduism is
based on a text called Bhagavad-Gita (Ura, 2015).
In the text, Krishna is advising Arjuna on virtues that builds character to
create a system that is ethical. One of them is how to behave at work. This
should be a reflection of an individual’s overall behavior. In business,
Krishna advises that it is good to be simple, peaceful and of good charity.
Honesty is encouraged by both employers and employees being truthful. Temper
should be minimal, and instead mild-mannerisms should be practiced. Being clean
at work is also encouraged. Employees should be obedient and their employers
merciful. Work should be equitable with no one being overburdened
unnecessarily. Other qualities that should be practiced in the workplace
include being humble, compassionate, respectful of others and sober. One should
also be eloquent, steady and determined. Conciseness and striving to be an
expert is also encouraged.
Buddhist views on
business ethics are guided by the Eightfold Path that is at the heart of
Buddhist teachings and traditions. The Eightfold Path has eight elements. These
are: Right View, Right Intention, Right Action, Right Speech, Right Livelihood,
Right Effort, Right Mindfulness and the Right Concentration (Rutirasiri, 2014). These elements act as
guide to how one conducts himself in a business setting; be it the employer or
the employee, or a business person conducting business deals. The elements call
for good judgement to be conducted in every aspect of conducting business. The
intentions of what one wants to do are first evaluated. The intentions should
be good with no ill will or evil. If the
intentions are agreeable then the actions are evaluated. The actions should
help or benefit and not harm. They should also be sincere. This also covers
speech, livelihood and effort. Paying attention is also part of the elements.
This calls for preparing early enough; be it meetings, presentations, or future
Different religions have
different views on business ethics. What, however, all of them have is that
business should be conducted in an honest manner and to the best of one’s
ability. Dishonesty and ill motives should have no place in the work place.