The category I have chosen is the environment because this category has been increasingly influential in managements’ decision-making. Each year, a new environmental report surfaces that details how humans have left a huge carbon footprint on Earth and how we must act now or else face dire consequences. Regardless of one’s political ideology, the environment will continue to be an important issue in society.
Managers must assess their stakeholders’ views on the environment and act accordingly. For a manager working for a business guided by stakeholder theory, he will act in the best interest of his stakeholders. For example, if this manager notices that his stakeholders feel passionately about reducing humans’ impact on the environment, he could allocate charitable donations to an environmentally friendly organization. Conversely, if the business follows shareholder theory, the manager will likely disregard the opinions of his stakeholders, and act to maximize shareholder value. For this example, if the manager notices that his stakeholders feel passionately about the environment, he will not go out of his way protect the environment. While that may seem like an exaggerated example, it is meant to highlight this particular manager’s decision to disregard the wants and desires of his stakeholders.
In the Political Typology Quiz, there were two questions related to the environment. I answered both questions in favor of the environment. My answers, however, are not consistent with the majority of individuals who identify with my political ideology. If I was a manger of a company and I had a stakeholder who wanted me to make a decision that would have a negative impact on the environment, but a positive impact on this particular stakeholder, what would I do? How might I reconcile these divergent political ideologies? The first step I would take would be to communicate directly with this stakeholder to show her that her opinion matters and is valued by me and my company. I would express to her my company’s values, and stress that we need to act responsibly and in the best interest of the environment. However, if the company’s values did not indicate that the company was in favor of protecting the environment, I would attempt to make environment-friendly practices more noticeable and prominent, so that my company and its decisions benefit the environment. I would act to protect the environment instead of following through with this particular stakeholder’s wishes for two primary reasons. Firstly, I care about the environment, and I feel that the next generation of businesses and managers need to do a better job of protecting the environment. Secondly, if I chose to act against the environment, my company could receive negative backlash from the media and other stakeholders. Balancing political ideologies and stakeholder opinions will not be an easy task, but a successful manager will find a way to ameliorate any situation.