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Ethics Case Study: Discussion

Making a decision as a manager. Who will you promote? The department manager below you has retired. You have the responsibility of choosing the next manager. Four candidates from outside the department were considered along with two from inside the department. Upper management has urged you to make an “inside” hire if there is someone qualified, because business is currently tight and profit margins are very narrow. The company is wanting to trim the workforce through retirement and those who leave for other reasons and try to avoid laying off workers. Since the two candidates inside the department are both qualified, you believe you can work within those preferred guidelines. Here is a partial description of the two candidates.

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  • One candidate is an older worker who has been with the company for close to thirty-five years and would be retiring in another five years. She has a good employment record, other employees like her, and you believe she would be compatible with the rest of the work force. However, she is the less qualified candidate of the two candidates as far as education. She has no college degree. Also, in recent projects in the department, she has not played a leading role. However, she has served on some of the committees.
  • The other candidate is in his late 20s, only having been with the company for about four years. He has a college degree in engineering and has already been the team leader in several projects in the department. His working relationship with other employees is also quite good. He is anxious to move up into higher management. You are aware that another company recently showed interest in trying to hire him away.

You believe either individual would do a good job as a leader. Which one would you choose as the new department manager? On what basis?

Post your discussion remarks using the “reply” button as you have done in previous ethics case studies. Remember to use and cite at least one reference source.

Study/research suggestions:

Look at the following article in Wikipedia and read the section on “Human Resource Management,” especially where it talks about promotions. This will not settle the issue for you, but it will give you some food for thought. The second link is a web site that has a template to guide businesses toward fair job promotion practices. It will give you some good ideas for your discussion post also.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Business_ethics#Human_resource_management (Links to an external site.)


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