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2.7 Exercises

Ethical Dilemma

You are working for the police department of your city. When hiring employees, the department uses a physical ability test in which candidates are asked to do 30 push-ups and 25 sit-ups, as well as climb over a 4-foot wall. When candidates take this test, it seems that about 80% of the men who take the test actually pass it, while only 10% of the female candidates pass the test. Do you believe that this is a fair test? Why or why not? If you are asked to review the employee selection procedures, would you make any changes to this system? Why or why not?

Individual Exercise

A colleague of yours is being sent to India as a manager for a call center. She just told you that she feels very strongly about the following issues:

  • Democratic leaders are the best leaders because they create a more satisfied workforce.
  • Employees respond best to individual-based pay incentives and bonuses as tools for motivation.
  • Employees should receive peer feedback about their performance level so that they can get a better sense of how well they are performing.

After doing some research on the business environment and national culture in India, how would you advise your colleague to behave? Should she try to transfer these three managerial practices to the Indian context? Why or why not?

Group Exercise

Diversity Dilemmas

Imagine that you are working in the HR department of your company. You come across the following scenarios in which your input has been sought. Discuss each scenario and propose an action plan for management.

  1. Aimee is the mother of a newborn. She is very dedicated to her work but she used to stay for longer hours at work before she had her baby. Now she tries to schedule her work so that she leaves around 5:00 p.m. Her immediate manager feels that Aimee is no longer dedicated or committed to her work and is considering passing her over for a promotion. Is this decision fair?
  2. Jack is a married male, while John is single. Your company has an assignment in a branch in Mexico that would last a couple of years. Management feels that John would be better for this assignment because he is single and is free to move. Is this decision fair?
  3. A manager receives a request from an employee to take off a Wednesday for religious reasons. The manager did not know that this employee was particularly religious and does not believe that the leave is for religious reasons. The manager believes that the employee is going to use this day as a personal day off. Should the manager investigate the situation?
  4. A sales employee has painful migraines intermittently during the work day. She would like to take short naps during the day as a preventative measure and she also needs a place where she can nap when a migraine occurs. Her immediate manager feels that this is unfair to the rest of the employees.
  5. A department is looking for an entry-level cashier. One of the job applicants is a cashier with 30 years of experience as a cashier. The department manager feels that this candidate is overqualified for the job and is likely to be bored and leave the job in a short time. Instead, they want to pursue a candidate with 6 months of work experience who seems like a better fit for the position.