Former President Suharto of Indonesian once famously dismissed the concern over his country’s corruption by saying: Well you come out here from Washington with these high ideas to tell us….
What conflict needs to be resolved?
In general your boss Dina has been good to you. Three years ago she set out to get approval for a special salary adjustment to bring your salary into line with other recent hires in the department. It wasn’t an easy undertaking, but she was persistent and in the end got approval for a substantial adjustment to your salary. In return, you have been loyal to Dina, defending her to other employees who were very critical of her. You felt as if you owed her for working so hard for your salary adjustment, but lately you have begun to wonder if your coworkers are right about her. Dina regularly praises Charlotte, a person in your department who arrives late, leaves early, and generally doesn’t do much when she is at work. You just don’t understand how a manager could defend such behavior. The Human Resources department is housed in another building and it doesn’t appear that they are aware of Charlotte’s behavior. You have tried to talk to Dina about this situation, but she doesn’t want to discuss it. You suspect that Dina is defending Charlotte because they have similar backgrounds. You are torn between defending a person who has been good to you in the past and voicing your concerns about the current situation.
1. What conflict needs to be resolved? 2. How might negotiation be used in this situation? 3. Do you have any obligation to Dina because she worked hard to gain approval for your salary adjustment three years ago? 4. Do you have an obligation to voice your concerns about Charlotte’s transgressions? 5. What risks do you face if you do speak up? 6. Based on your value system, what would you do in this situation?