Ten scenarios allow students to practice addressing employee issues ranging from suspected employee

| March 31, 2017

Project Team: Case Abstract

Ten scenarios allow students to practice addressing employee issues ranging from suspected employee theft to personal hygiene. Students are asked to first assume the role of a manager and confront the employee on sensitive issues that frequently occur in the workplace, and then to assume the role of an HR manager and identify the HR implications in the scenario. The scenarios challenge students to think on their feet, exercise judgment, and render a decision toward successful resolution. There is no separate student workbook; the instructor will distribute roles with details and information to the students as the group role-plays each scenario.

5. You are a project manager and supervise a team of 11 people. It is near Christmas, and you notice that within one day the office supply cabinet has been conspicuously depleted of tape, scissors, and packing materials. Other than you, the administrative assistant, Lesley, is the only one with the key to the cabinet. You need to talk to Lesley.


The manager has the discussion with Lesley and tells her not to take company property for personal use. This case can lead to an HR policy discussion on the proper level of discipline for theft of company property. Some companies have a zero tolerance rule; any theft is grounds for immediate termination. Others have a progressive discipline for minor theft and immediate termination for more egregious violations. Should it be a common practice to allow employees to use office supplies? (DelPo & Guerin, 2005.)

6. You are the director of human resources. You asked your benefits administrator, Morgan, to immediately send new benefit information to your boss for her review. The next day, you are chews out by your boos out for not sending her the information. You look bad. You decide to talk to Morgan.


We often rely on others to get work done. When others fail, it makes you look bad. This can be a very emotional discussion because it may reflect on your ability to deliver work requests. As a manager, you will need to address the lack of follow-through. How do you control your emotions in these situations? Focus on your body language. What words did you choose? What was your tone of voice? How would you describe your eye contact? To delve into the HR implications, ask: How often does Morgan not complete tasks? Is this just a one-time event? Did Morgan have the skills to complete the task? Should this event trigger a formal discipline process? Is

there a systemic issue that needs to be addressed by HR?

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