Programme PGP Term V Academic Year 2021-22

Course title Business Leadership and Corporate Accountability Area Public Systems Group Credits 1.00

Prof. Rajnish Rai

Course Description & Objectives
This course is about the responsibilities of business leaders. Although a business leader’s specific responsibilities vary from situation to situation, in general, they fall into three broad categories: economic, legal, and ethical. Economic responsibilities relate to resource allocation and wealth creation; legal duties flow from formal laws and regulations, and ethical obligations and commitments have to do with basic principles and standards of conduct. This triad — economics, law, and ethics — describes the framework within which business leaders are expected to exercise the authority entrusted to them. These responsibilities are not mutually exclusive; in fact, often, these perspectives are intertwined. The business leaders and the companies they lead are expected to make decisions that simultaneously meet all three sets of responsibilities.

The purpose of the course is to give you a realistic understanding of these responsibilities and provide you with a set of practical tools to help you carry them out. This course introduces the participants to the basic responsibilities of business leaders and companies. It consists of four modules, one on each of the corporation’s four main constituency groups: investors, customers, employees and suppliers, and the general public. Although each module focuses on a particular constituency, the cases grow more complex and involve more constituencies as the course proceeds. Through this progression, participants see that these groups are interdependent and recognize the need for strategies that meet the requirements of all.

This course helps the students, who aspire to become business leaders, to
a. know what their role-related responsibilities are;
b. learn how to incorporate these responsibilities into your decision making;
c. know how to build organizations that can make good on these responsibilities; and
d. develop the personal strength and resources needed to recognize and carry out these responsibilities in ambiguous, stressful, and fast-changing situations.

These points outline the learning agenda for Business Leadership and Corporate Accountability (BLCA). Although no single course can cover all these aspects in full, BLCA aims to give students a basic grounding in each.

Our class time together will primarily involve a case-based approach with student-led class discussions and presentations. In addition, class time will include a mix of lectures and reflections on video clips. The effort will be to provide participants a basic understanding of (a) the economic, legal, and ethical responsibilities of companies and their leaders; and (b) how business leaders can align their companies’ conduct with these responsibilities.