As Executive Director, you are seeking to promote one of your staff to the position of Associate Director. After the selection process was completed, you decided to promote Eva, a hardworking employee with excellent reviews. Upon announcing the promotion, information comes to light that Eva’s resume included several damaging misrepresentations including: previous employment history which stated that she’d been an assistant director for another organization when in reality, she had only ever covered for the assistant director when he’d been on vacation; she’d “managed” high performing teams when she’d really only been the secretary taking notes; and finally that she had an MBA when in reality, she had begun, but failed to complete an MBA program. Word has gotten out about these misrepresentations and spread to subordinates. What do you, the Executive Director, do? Do you proceed with the promotion, retain Eva but not promote her, or fire Eva?
Susan and Ray have both been laid off from their middle-management positions. Both are very upset and nervous about finding new opportunities in the current job market. Ray is very inarticulate and docile. He accepts the severance package offered by the company: four weeks’ pay and benefit continuation. Susan, also anxious, complains about the inadequate severance. She starts accusing the company of disparate treatment and threatens a lawsuit. In an effort to negotiate with Susan, the company offers her a six-month severance page with pay and benefit continuation. Has the company been fair in its treatment of these employees? What possible consequences could arise?
Businesses will almost always have multiple stakeholders, and many times their interests will conflict. This means that a business decision-maker will frequently have to make a decision in the face of competing claims from different stakeholders. The question of whose interests should be prioritized requires the exercise of judgment. This skill—examining competing claims and deciding which one is the strongest—is called evaluation. You will want to consider the power, urgency, and legitimacy that each stakeholder presents.
You should put yourselves in each stakeholder’s position—Why do they care about the outcome of the decision? How will they be affected? What outcome would they prefer? What are their arguments in support of their preferred outcome? You will want to consider the power, urgency, and legitimacy that each stakeholder presents.
As a reminder, for each incident, be sure to identify all relevant stakeholders and determine how they could be impacted by the decision that will be made, identify and apply at least one principle for ethical reasoning, and then consider alternative courses of action and choose the best course of action based on stakeholder impacts and the outcome of the application of the ethical principle.
The promotion of staff is one of the fundamental processes in any organization. A lot of caution should be taken when carrying out this process to avoid raising conflicts in the organization and its operations and stakeholder relationship. Some of the stakeholders affected by this process include customers, employers, and other staff members. Customers are the people that buy goods and services from an organization and hence require that the people involved in producing the goods and services are produced by the right people and the right procedures. Customers are a critical part of any organization, and hence the activities should not jeopardize issues. The other stakeholders that apply to promotional activities of any organization are the employers or owners of the business. They are concerned with the daily running of affairs of the organization. The individuals are concerned about the organization’s activities of which the promotion of workers is part. When individuals get promoted and prove inefficient and unproductive, they get impacted by poor results in reduced returns on investment, losses, and non-achievement of targets. The other stakeholders that are likely to be affected by promotional activities are other employees of the organization looking at the organization’s management and activities as a source of motivation in their work. When employees learn of unfair recruitment activities in an organization, they lose their source of motivation, which ultimately leads to poor quality of work done.
In our case, Eva went against the ethical principle of truth-telling by lying about her employment history, previous work position, experience, and academic qualifications. The truth-telling principle relates to the candid disclosure of information to people, which Eva went against (Lleo de Nalda et al., 2016). For this case, some of the courses of action can be firing her for misinforming the organization for her gain, demoting her to a lower position, promoting her, or retaining her in her position. In my opinion, the best judgment for this case would be retaining her in her current position but not promoting her to the associate director position. The impact of this course of action is that the consumers will have a chance of getting an individual that is qualified to do work that guarantees them a quality product and service delivery. The managers and owners of the organization will also benefit from the decision by being confident that the individual sitting at the associate director’s seat is competent enough to deliver good results in sales, profits, client base, and ultimately the success of the organization. This decision shall also have a positive impact on the organization’s employees by making them motivated and guaranteed that the firm stands for the values of transparency and meritocracy. This way, they shall work hard to prove to the management that they are competent and capable of leading the organization. Besides, the general society shall also have a positive view of the organization. People shall view the organization as one that applies the principles of fairness, integrity, and honesty, which shall, in return, bolster its image or reputation.
Laying off workers from an organization is one of the nightmares that managers have due to the repercussions that could accompany such a decision. One of the effects is that the affected people can go public about the whole issue, which can have a negative impact on the reputation of the organization is a question since people can relate it to an oppressive firm. Many people are always vocal against oppressive organizations, and as it has been seen before, such an issue can spark a boycott against the goods and services offered by the organization. Such a backlash from consumers can be the end of an organization’s operations or demand restoration procedures that can be costly and uncertain. In other cases, it can lead to lawsuits and attract human and labor rights activities that can jeopardize the organization. Some of the affected stakeholders when such an issue occurs are the customers, other employees, the community, and the stockholders who hold particular powers, legitimacy, and urgency that can have various effects on its operations.
In our case study, it is without a doubt that the organization is being unfair in its treatment of its employees Susan and Ray stipulated by its awarding of difference severance packages to them. The major repercussions for such decisions can be law suits, an uproar from labor rights activists, and boycotts by current employees, which all have detrimental effects on the organization’s image and operations. Their actions are also against the ethical reasoning principle of justice and beneficence. It is unjust to fail to award redundant workers their due severance packages and also non-beneficent.
Some of the effects of carrying out the unfair allocation of the severance packages to the workers include an uproar from the public, a backlash from other employees in solidarity with their former colleagues, development of a lawsuit which can be hard and expensive to put away, loss of dividends by stockholders when people boycott the firm’s products leading to losses and loss of customers. To avoid all these scenarios, the firm can carry out a number of solutions; continue with its plan of awarding ray and Susan different packages or award both of them equal and just shares. The best option is to award Ray and Susan equal shares of severance money. This way, they will part with the organization on good grounds, and the organization will avoid tarnishing its name, losing clients, lawsuits, and a likely backlash from other employees. The community shall also regard it as a fair employer that abides by the law.