People Movement Ltd specialise in professional recruitment (placing skilled workers into new long term employment) and some of their high value clients include project management and corporate law firms.
The organisation employs a workforce of 22 full time staff and a number of part time employees. There are five senior managers amongst them; Carol (Chief Executive Officer), Edward (Chief Financial Officer), Bronwyn (Chief Operating Officer), Tim (Manager of the Recruitment Team) and Graeme (Human Resource Manager). The remaining staff are made up of Account Executives (9), Administrators (3) and support roles (5).
The company has been operating for five years and during that time they have grown in size and profitability and have experienced little turnover of the core staff of the business, until recently…
One month ago, Tim the Manager of the recruitment team, (who had been with People Movement Ltd since it began) handed in his resignation stating his reason for leaving as; starting his own recruitment firm. He was a well-respected and popular member of the entire team and within two weeks of his resignation five of the remaining full-time account executives had also resigned. All of the departing staff are going to work at Tim’s new firm, they will now be considered direct competition to People Movement Ltd. The senior management team of People Movement Ltd made the decision to invoke a clause in their existing individual employment agreements and ‘walked’ all six of the staff immediately after receiving their letters of resignation - they were given 20 minutes to clean up their offices and leave the company permanently.
There was no warning that Tim was planning this move. However, six months ago he had initiated a meeting with Bronwyn talking about new software he had learned about at a conference that he felt would be “revolutionary for client management, resulting in huge financial advantages for the stakeholders”. Bronwyn and Tim took the recommendation to the next board meeting but an overall decision had been deferred until the beginning of the next financial year (July 2016). Tim had attended the conference at the end of last year as part of his role.
There was no internal announcement or communication of any kind from the management team to the remaining members of staff about the very quick exit of the six who had left. To add to their growing list of problems Edward had made a comment to Graemein his office one day that they should conduct a ‘rebalance’ of the existing team within the next few months, unfortunately he said it too loud,and it was heard by two of the account executives.This statement was nothing more than a passing suggestion and was in no way a fact but the damage had been done. Combined, these factors caused a lot of speculation amongst staff and many different versions of events began to circulate through rumours.
The obvious concerns included;what competitors would be saying about the loss of so many staff,resulting in the effect this would have on the reputation of the firm but in addition Graeme had been given reports that there was some unusual and resentful behaviour starting to occur within the remaining team. Some of the remaining team members were overheard making comments to each other in the staff room the day before yesterday.
1.“Why was I not approached by Tim, to join his new team?”
2.“If so many have left, there must be something wrong with this firm?”
3.“The people who were dismissed immediately were our friends, how could the management team be so ruthless and not even acknowledge their individual contributions to the success of the company. They could of at least offered them an exit interview?”
4.“Well, I’ve actually been talking to Tim in the last couple of days and he said that his new recruitment firm is going to bankrupt this one anyway. Apparently he has got his hands on some ‘revolutionary’ new software which will make them so competitive that he reckons he will be the market leader in the next six months!”
1.Identify the three stances that ‘People Movements’ can take towards CSRand provide a reasoned argument to identify which one of the three they are demonstrating. Include in your answer some of the likely criticisms that the ‘People Movements’ management team might offer to argue against being Social Responsible.
2.Identify what stage of moral development Tim is showing based on the information provided in the case. Explain what you understand about this stage.
3.Explain what the management team of People Movements can do to encourage ethical behaviour from their employees for the future. Provide a draft of your recommendations in a plan for them.
4.Discuss how the ethical issues highlighted in this case will likely impact Organisational Sustainability.