Anethical dilemma is a complicated circumstance that normally entailsan apparent mental conflict involving two or more imperatives.Adhering to one of them leads to the transgression of another. It isa common thing in many fields including medicine, businesses, andengineering among others. In corporations, a worker can face such achallenge when his/her bosses get involved in corrupt activities.Exposing them may lead to termination of the job among other severeconsequences. Keeping the secret is morally wrong. Workers also faceethical challenges in the way they treat each other. Sometimesmanagers use particular terms jokingly, but they affect theemployees. Such jokes may be based on gender, race, or age. In thatregard, this interview will seek to illustrate how such jokes cancause a dilemma to the top management.
Have you ever handled a case involving manager-employee conflict?
How often are the cases?
Are hilarious comments considered abusive?
What is the extent by which one is allowed to joke?
Is it bad for a manager to constantly joke about women?
Are women protected against such behaviors?
There is a manager who is always jovial and performs his work with due diligence. However, his jokes do not go down well with female employees. How should I approach the issues?
Is there a law that prohibits such jokes?
How do you determine whether the claims are false?
If the behavior warrants punishment, how severe is should it be?
How should I approach the manager to ensure he does not target the female employees?
Fromthe interview, the clear description of employee rights wasclarified. In other words, I got to comprehend the different rightsemployees within the organization. Some Acts like Fair LaborStandards (FLSA), Age Discrimination in Employment (ADA), CivilRights, and the Pregnancy Discrimination among others protect womenfrom any abuse within organizations. According to the EqualEmployment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), it is illegal to harass aperson due to her sex. The EEOC is tasked with ensuring employees aregiven a conducive environment to perform their daily undertakings.Harassment according to the body can involve unwelcome sexualadvances, sexual harassment, physical or verbal harassment, orrequests for sexual favors. It can also entail offensive commentsabout an individual’s sex. In that regard, uttering comments thatcan be deemed offensive to women is considered illegal. Asestablished by the body, harassment has so many forms such thatpeople do not adhere to its repercussions. Though the law does notprohibit isolated incidents, offhand utterances, or simple teasingthat are not serious in nature, harassment is unlawful if it issevere or so frequent to the extent that creates a hostile workingenvironment. In other words, if there is too much teasing, it wouldcreate an intimidating working environment. The involved persons maystop communicating or be demoralized hence affecting the company’sproductivity levels. Such behaviors can lead to demotions or firingof the victims.
Therefore,when such cases have been reported, the most appropriate way is towarn the harasser in a gentle way. In the case above, Tom is quiteproductive to the company, and it would affect the company negativelyto lose him. Apart from that, it is in his nature to give hilariouscomments that sometimes go overboard. As the branch manager, I haveto consider all the employees. As gained from the interview, I willhave to handle both parties with care to ensure the environment staysconducive for working. The best move is to approach Tom and explainto him the claims and how the victims feel. It would not be atop-down conversation or rather a friendly chart meant to assessTom’s reactions. The next step would be to bring the partiestogether to clear the air. As the boss, I would also lay down therules and state the repercussion if they are contravened. If Tompersists with the same behavior, then a suspension or transfer wouldfollow.
Asrecommended by the Interviewee, the situation needs a cautiousapproach so that both parties are satisfied. It is vital to state therules and remain calm in the whole process. Apart from that, theyshould know who is in charge. In other words, even if Tom is afriend, he ought to be careful not to overstep his boundaries. Somepeople hide their abuses within jokes and as a manager, I shoulddifferentiate the same. In Tom’s case, it is evident the femaleworkers do not appreciate his comments. Whether they are hilarious ornot, the fact that they cause disharmony within the organizationmeans they cannot be tolerated. The interaction with the HR preparedme to address Tom. I am well aware of the extent to which Tom canjoke. It is also evident that his remarks are illegal mainly becausethey target the women. Though the legal aspects do not cover thebehavior extensively, I know how to apply them in this context.
Barrett, M. (2015). Overview of Retaliation Laws beyond EEOC.
U.S. Department of Labor. (2011). The Fair Standards Act of 1938.
U.S. EEOC. (2016). Sexual Harassment. Retrieved from https://www.eeoc.gov/laws/types/sexual_harassment.cfm