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APA
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Business & Marketing
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English (U.S.)
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Normalization of deviance in the corporate world Business Essay (Essay Sample)

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DEMONSTRATE THE NORMALIZATION BY THE CORPORATE WORLD, BY COMPANIES SUCH AS VOLKSWAGEN, VOLVO, WHICH COST THE COMPANIES BILLIONS IN LAWSUITS. pROVIDE AN EXAMPLE OF NORMALIZATION OF DEVIANCE IN REAL WORLD SCENARIOS.

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Normalization of Deviance
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The Normalization of Deviance
The term “normalization of deviance,” coined by Diane Vaughan, has well demonstrated by Jerry Useem in his article in The Atlantic magazine, titled, “What was Volkswagen Thinking”. This well-articulated piece, discourses how some of the most appalling corporate decisions are initiated by ignoring small inconvenient data, unknowingly creating a culture with rationalizes deviance even in critical decisions. By taking examples from Useem’s article, this essay will demonstrate how the normalization of deviance led to the most unethical decisions in Volkswagen and Ford, which led to incredible losses and a stain on the company’s image.
The refusal of Ford to recall the Pintos models that had exploding gas tanks, and the decision of Volkswagen to falsify data on the emission testing, are both keen examples of the “normalization of deviance” in actions. Unlike the case of the NASA challenger launch, which one might argue may have been as a result of ill-advisement, but does not seem to have been intentional, both Ford and Volkswagen were very deliberate in their actions. And while this may be the case, one cannot ultimately conclude that the management at these companies was dishonest or unattractive. As sociologist Vaughan argues explains, the cultural shift actions that were regarded as “not acceptable” are slowly regarded as “acceptable” over time (Useem, 2016). This compromise on the moral ethics of a company often begins with the minor decision, creating an environment where they are also forced to do the same on even the major issues, lest they admit to their offense on the small issues. Moreover, as she argues, once such rationalization has been made, it becomes easier to so the second time the management or person is faced with such a decision, creating an endless loop.

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