It sometimes requires uncommon courage, as whistle-blowing in the workplace is not so easy to do. What motivates you? Is it revenge, ethics or a combination? To take a closer look, let’s consider what is whistle blowing and explore a few conditions used to justify whistle-blowing, and concluded with how companies can benefit from a whistle-blowing policy.
What is a whistle-blower or whistle-blowing?
Let’s make it clear that informers and snitches are individuals, who reveal information for personal enrichment or a means to get at others. However, whistle-blowers like Bobby Boutris a Federal Aviation
Administration employee are generally conscientious people who expose some wrong doing, often at great personal risk such as death threats.
Whistle-blowing is the voluntary release of nonpublic information, as a moral protest, by a member or former member of an organization outside the normal channels of communication to an appropriate audience about illegal and/or immoral conduct in the organization or conduct in the organization that is opposed in some significant way to the public interest.
Given the high price that whistle-blowers sometimes pay, should people really be encouraged to blow the whistle? Yes, Boutris testified that there was too cozy of a relationship between an FAA supervisor and the airline that allowed Southwest to fly damaged planes. He mentions six of the planes had a crack in their fuselage and multiple cracks, ranging from one inch to three-and-a-half inches long. In this statement, it became clear the airline flew unsafe planes. The reality is as a loyal passe...
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... organization from wrongdoing nor eliminate whistle-blowing outside of prescribed channels. A policy with regard to whistle-blowing is worth considering by any company that is committed to ethical conduct.
In conclusion, it is evident that employees who are justified in blowing the whistle should not suffer retaliation. What ought to be done to protect whistle-blowers from this fate is less clear. A plausible case can be made for the legislation in this area, but the difficulty is in drafting laws that achieve a desired result without interfering unduly in the legitimate conduct of business.
References for work cited.
4 Journal of Management, Fall, 1996
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