1 Ethics Case Studies – PART 1 LEE Casualty been with XYZ Property Company for twelve years, all in a large regional Lee has office in the Midwest. He established an impressive track recor d of getting results, and was well ield management alike. Anxious to further his career, -‐ respected by his staff and senior f he applied for and was hired into a Strategic Business Consultant position at the company’s headquarters. This is a developmental role intended for high potential employees such as intended to eng Lee, employees with insurance field experience to work on long -‐ term age strategic issues facing the company. A critical capability for success in this position is the creation of clear, c oncise reports and presentation of issues and recommendations. Lee atten ded a class and received coaching in these areas as part of his early training for the job. After a recent presentation, he received feedback that although h is analysis was good, his report and presentation materials were rambling and confusing. The c lea this r message from his boss was: “...fix problem, for future success depends upon your ability to communicate clearly and convincingly .” Another presentation is scheduled for next week. Lee feels helpless to improve in so short a bor Sheila to write the report and presentation for him. He uses time, so he hires his neigh company funds to pay Sheila, calling the expense ‘skill development’. Was Lee doing anything unethical? Why or why not? Which of Lee’s values might be at odds with one another? What are the risks to his reputation: by hiring Sheila to do the work? by not hiring Sheila to do the work? Which in your opinion poses the more serious risk? LEE – PART 2 Lee uses Sheila’s report and presentation as his own, and he receives rave reviews fro m senior management. He continues to hire Sheila on the side to prepare his materials. Not
2 only does Lee look good, but so does Marcia, his boss. She’s credited with turning Lee’s performance around in a short period of time, and with accurately evaluati ng Lee as a quick study and someone worthy of future advancement. After several weeks, quite by accident, Marcia meets Sheila at a party and learns of her role in Lee’s success. Not only is Marcia disturbed by Lee’s duplicity, but does not know what she’ ll do with this new information at Monday morning’s Talent Review meeting. If she’s honest with her boss and peers about what she’s learned, her reputation as an astute leader will suffer along with Lee’s reputation. Is this an ethical dilemma of Marcia’s values might be at odds with one another? If ? Which you were Marcia, what would you do? In formulating your answer, consider each of the resolution principles: end -‐ based (i.e., what produces the greatest good for the greatest number?) -‐ based (follow the rule, or the principle that you want everyone else to , rule follow) , and care -‐ based (do to others what you would want them to do for you – but note: there may be several ‘others’ to consider) .
3 TOO MUCH INFORMATION ting department of Regressive Insurance Saad was Bernie’s supervisor in the marke up until about five years ago. Saad was aware that Bernie enjoyed going to the track and visiting casinos, and began to be concerned that Bernie’s gambling was becoming excessive. Knowing that his performance was s uffering because of frequent absences (all due to extended gambling trips), Bernie got out of Regressive before he was disciplined, and he and Saad have remained friendly. Both Saad and Bernie have since taken jobs at other companies, and Bernie is out i , this time for a job at Gibbs Mutual . Saad’s neighbor is the interviewing nterviewing again manager and learns that Bernie and Saad worked together at Regressive. The at Gibbs neighbor has asked Saad, off the record, if he would recommend Bernie for the o pen position. Saad is concerned when he learns that the position has financial and fiduciary responsibilities , for he knows that Bernie continues to gamble, and sometimes gets in over his head. dilemma? If so, which of Saad’s val ues might be at odds with one Does Saad face an ethical another? In formulating your answer, consider What should he do to resolve the matter? each of the resolution principles: end -‐ based (i.e., what produces the greatest good for the greatest number?), rule -‐ based (follow the rule , or the principle that you want everyone else to follow), and care -‐ based (do to others what you would want them to do for you – but note: there may be several ‘others’ to consider).
4 C ULTURE SHOCK ed a large loss of its own. A senior claim The Specialty Large Loss Unit of ACME Casualty has suffer scheme with a plaintiff and the plaintiff’s attorney, consultant has been caught in an embezzlement and it’s been discovered that this is just the latest i n a series of fraudulent activities which the as orchestrated consultant h . Her long -‐ time boyfriend, who has an administrative against ACME role in the department, also participated in the fraud which took place over the course of eighteen months . Several fellow employees had been suspicious of the pair, but they never raised concerns to management because they didn’t trust that their suspicions would be kept confidential. The manager of the department had no knowledge of the fraud, but the stress of the aftermath and mpted him to le ave the company and get a job elsewhere. Maria is the fallout from the discovery pro successful leader of another unit in the company’s claim organization, and she’s been selected to take the departing manager’s place as head of the Specialty Large Loss Unit. Although Internal Audit ha s confirmed that the fraudulent activity was confined to the one claim consultant and her boyfriend (both of whom have been fired and prosecuted), Maria faces several problems. The department’s reputation with other ACME units, its independent agents, and with defense and plaintiff attorneys alike is suffering. Staff morale is low, and there’s an unspoken belief on the part of many that the department’s culture may in some way have contributed to the occurrence of the fraud, and to the fact that it continue d for so long. What should Maria do to turn around the unit’s reputation, and to create a culture that embraces high ethical standards?
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