Business Ethics

Ethics in the business realm are a paramount concern in Jewish thought. It is taught in the Talmud that the first thing the soul is asked after leaving it’s earthly vessel is: Nasata V’netata Be’emunah–“Did you conduct your business affairs with honesty and ethically.” In all we do, we are tasked to go beyond the norm and strive for excellence. This encompasses those who pursue business and interact with customers and people regularly. One who is unscrupulous and cheats his or her customers violates many Biblical and Talmudic norms. While business is entirely of the earthly, mortal realm, it is indicative of how our soul responds to the needs of others. In Jewish thought, being honest in business goes beyond economics. It is a matter of propriety and holy empowerment. If we are present and honest in how we conduct business, so are we with making the commandments of Torah manifest in this world.

Source Sheets:

An Introduction to Business Ethics

Jewish Business Ethics

Joseph’s Economy: The Business Ethics of “Insider Information”

Jewish Business Ethics: Proper Marketing and Selling

Lifnei Iver and Business Ethics



Take Action!

  • If you are treated unfairly by a business, talk to the owner or manager. Tell them that what they are doing is unfair.
  • Encourage local businesses to join Better Business Bureaus to make sure that their practices are graded and in the public record.
  • Write positive reviews for businesses that go above and beyond.