Start by reading and following these instructions:
Quickly skim the questions or assignment below and the assignment rubric to help you focus. Read the required chapter(s) of the textbook and any additional recommended resources. Some answers may require you to do additional research on the Internet or in other reference sources. Choose your sources carefully.
Consider the course discussions so far and any insights gained from it. Create your Assignment submission and be sure to cite your sources if needed, use APA style as required, and check your spelling.
Explain how a major trend in the environment has affected your profession, job, or skills— as a professional or student. Be speciﬁc. Are any ethical consequences involved, and has this trend affected you?
You are applying to a prestigious organisation for an important, highly visible position. The application requires you to describe an ethical dilemma in your history and how you handled it. Describe the dilemma and your ethical position. Be sure to fully explain the entire situation.
Also discuss how your personal ethical values influenced your decisions and behaviour in this matter. (Note those instances where you might find that there was some difference between these aspirational/espoused values and your actual behaviour).
You are a staff associate at a major public accounting firm and graduated from college two years ago. You are working on an audit for a small, non-profit religious publishing firm. After performing tests on the royalty payables system, you discover that for the past five years, the royalty payable system has miscalculated the royalties it owes to authors for their publications.
The firm owes almost $100,000 in past due royalties. All of the contracts with each author are negotiated differently. However, each author’s royalty percentage will increase at different milestones in books sold (i.e., 2% up to $10,000 and 3% thereafter).
The software package did not calculate the increases, and none of the authors ever received their increase in royalty payments. At first you can’t believe that none of the authors ever realised they were owed their money. You double check your calculations and then present your findings to the senior auditor on the job.
Much to your surprise, his suggestion is to pass over this finding. He suggests that you sample new additional royalty contracts and document that you expanded your testing and found nothing wrong. The firm’s audit approach is well documented in this area and is firmly based on statistical sampling.
Because you had found multiple errors in the small number of royalty contracts tested, the firm’s approach suggested testing 100% of the contracts. This would mean (1) going over the budgeted time/expense estimated to the client; (2) possibly providing a negative audit finding; and (3) confirming that the person who audited the section in the years past may not have performed procedures correctly.
Based on the prior year’s work papers, the senior auditor on the job performed the testing phase in all of these years just before his promotion. For some reason, you get the impression that the senior auditor is frustrated with you. The relationship seems strained.
He is very intense, constantly checking the staff ’s progress in the hope of coming in even a half-hour under budget for a designated test/audit area. There’s a lot of pressure, and you don’t know what to do. This person is responsible for writing your review for your personnel file and bonus or promotion review. He is a very popular employee who is “on the fast track” to partnership.
You don’t know whether to tell the truth and risk a poor performance review and jeopardise your future with this company, or to tell the truth, hopefully be exonerated, and be able to live with yourself by “doing the right thing” and facing consequences with a clean conscience.
What would you do as the staff associate in this situation? Why? What are the risks of telling the truth for you? What are the beneﬁts? Explain.
What is the “right” thing to do in this situation? What is the “smart” thing to do for your job and career? What is the difference, if there is one, between the “right” and “smart” thing to do in this situation? Explain.
Explain what you would say to the senior auditor, your boss, in this situation if you decided to tell the truth as you know it
Start by reading and following these instructions:
Select a corporate leader in the news who acted legally but immorally and one who acted illegally but morally. Explain the differences of the actions and behaviours in each of the two examples. What lessons do you take from your examples?
Using Internet search tools, select a case example of an organisation that has made what it considered to be an ethical decision. Describe the decision it faced and the decisions and actions that it took subsequently.
Critique that decision using the five ethical decision-making principles discussed in Chapter 2. Which of the principles were emphasised? Which were less emphasised? Do you agree with their decision? Why or why not?
Brieﬂy explain your ethical decision-making style as presented in the module.
I was employed as a certified public accountant (CPA) for a regional accounting firm that specialised in audits of financial institutions and had many local clients. My responsibilities included supervising staff, collecting evidence to support financial statement assertions, and compiling work papers for managers and partners to review.
During the audit of a publicly traded bank, I discovered that senior bank executives were under investigation by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) for removing funds from the bank.
They were also believed to be using bank funds to pay corporate credit card bills for gas and spouses’ expenses. The last allegation noted that the executives were issuing loans to relatives without proper collateral.
After reviewing the work papers, I found two checks made payable to one executive of the bank that were selected during a cash count from two tellers. There was no indication based on our sampling that expenses were being paid for spouses. My audit manager and the chief financial officer (CFO) of my firm were aware of these problems.
After the fieldwork for the audit was completed, I was called into the CEO’s office.
The CEO and the chief operating officer (COO) stated that the FDIC examiners wanted to interview the audit manager, two staff accountants, and me. The CEO then asked the following question: “If you were asked by the FDIC about a check or checks made payable to bank executives, how would you answer?”
I told them that I would answer the FDIC examiners by stating that, during our audit, we made copies of two checks made payable to an executive of the bank for $8,000 each.
The COO stated that during his review of the audit work papers he had not found any copies of checks made payable to executives. He also stated that a better response to the question regarding the checks would be, “I was not aware of reviewing any checks specifically made payable to the executive in question.”
The COO then said that the examiners would be in the following day to speak with the audit staff. I was dismissed from the meeting. Neither the CEO nor the COO asked me if the suggested “better” response was the response I would give, and I did not volunteer the information.
During the interview, the FDIC investigators never asked me whether I knew about the checks. Should I have volunteered this information?