Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 11–19 | Cite as

Executive attitudes, organizational size and ethical issues: Perspectives on a service industry

  • Paul R. Murphy
  • Jonathan E. Smith
  • James M. Daley
Article

Abstract

Responding to Randall and Gibson's (1990) call for more rigorous methodologies in empirically-based ethics research, this paper develops propositions — based on both previous ethics research as well as the larger organizational behavior literature — examining the impact of attitudes, leadership, presence/absence of ethical codes and organizational size on corporate ethical behavior. The results, which come from a mail survey of 149 companies in a major U.S. service industry, indicate that attitudes and organizational size are the best predictors of ethical behavior. Leadership and ethical codes contribute little to predicting ethical behavior. The paper concludes with an assessment of the relevant propositions, as well as a delineation of future research needs.

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul R. Murphy
    • 1
  • Jonathan E. Smith
    • 1
  • James M. Daley
    • 1
  1. 1.School of BusinessJohn Carroll UniversityClevelandUSA

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