Injecting Ethics into MD Cosmetics Critical Incident

Injecting Ethics into MD Cosmetics

Paul E. Olsen, Saint Michael's College Patrick J. Doherty, Saint Michael's College Thomas Van Dzura, Saint Michael's College
January 8, 2020
North America
Ethics & Social Justice
3 pages
Business Ethics, Corporate Social Responsibility, ethics of bankruptcy, business law, small business
Student Price: 
$4.00 (€3.72)
Average rating: 

This critical incident is about Erin Jewell who owned and operated MD Cosmetics, a cosmetic medical spa in Williston, Vermont. Jewell suddenly closed MD Cosmetics after the resignation of her medical director. She still owed customers $118,000 in gift cards and prepaid cosmetic services. If Jewell remained closed and declared bankruptcy, what ethical obligation, if any, did she have to her clients? In short, should Jewell do what is right for her or what is right for her former customers?

Learning Outcomes: 

In completing this assignment, students should be able to:
1. Explain ethical decision-making and corporate social responsibility
2. Apply ethical decision-making to a business case
3. Describe the ethical issues involved in declaring bankruptcy

This decision-based critical incident is appropriate for courses in business ethics, small business management, and business law.