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Business Law Chapter 32 Homework Jims Gym What Was Your Most Damaging

Page Count
4 pages
Word Count
815 words
Book Title
Applied Business Ethics: A Skills-Based Approach 1st Edition
Authors
Dean Bredeson
MODULE 32: Employee Behavior Away from the Office
Core Module Issues:
When should “off duty” behavior have an effect on an employee's job?
How should a worker who misbehaves while off duty be disciplined?
Module Teaching Notes
As with most of our “end of the unit” modules, there are few genuinely new issues to lecture on
before starting the discussion. A couple of relevant ideas:
1. When workers make mistakes on the job, their employers are often liable under the doctrine of
respondeat superior.
2. Workers who misbehave away from the office generally do not create legal liability for their
employers.
3. But, misbehavior can nonetheless embarrass a company, and an embarrassed company is free
to take disciplinary action if it wishes to do so.
Discussion Points for Scenario Questions
[The question here is in an unusual format be sure to give students a chance to complete
the rankings after question 3 if they have not done so already.]
Read the first, second, and third questions, and then use the blanks below to assess the characters
in this scenario. For each question, on a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being most harmful), how
harmful do you think each event described in the scenario is likely to be to the company?
Q1 Rating Q2 Rating Q3 Rating Incident
_____ _____ _____ DWI (no injury)
_____ _____ _____ DWI (with injuries)
_____ _____ _____ Fight
_____ _____ _____ Domestic Violence
_____ _____ _____ Marijuana and Handgun
_____ _____ _____ Trespass at Governor's Mansion
_____ _____ _____ Criticizing Company's Efforts to
Attract Female Fighters
1. How harmful do you think each of the incidents will be to Jim's Gym?
A. WHAT WAS YOUR “MOST DAMAGING” INCIDENT?
B. WHAT WAS YOUR “LEAST DAMAGING” INCIDENT?
2. Now assume that each of the newspaper articles described did mention Jim's Gym as the
employer of the person who got into trouble. How harmful do you think each of the incidents
would be to Jim's Gym?
A. WHAT WAS YOUR “MOST DAMAGING” INCIDENT?
B. WHAT WAS YOUR “LEAST DAMAGING” INCIDENT?
3. Assume that the described incidents happened and that the newspapers named the employers
of everyone who got into trouble, but now assume that instead of an operation that works with
children, the employees all work for a standard professional services firm (a law firm, accounting
firm, consulting firm, etc.). How harmful do you think each incident would be to the company?
A. WHAT WAS YOUR “MOST DAMAGING” INCIDENT?
B. WHAT WAS YOUR “LEAST DAMAGING” INCIDENT?
4. Now draw the line, taking into account the guidelines issued in the first three questions (Q1:
Jim’s Gym, newspapers don’t name employer; Q2: Jim’s Gym, newspapers do name employer;
Q3: Professional services firm, newspapers do name employer). Which workers should be fired?
Which should be merely disciplined or just left alone? Indicate whether you would fire,
discipline, or leave the employee alone in the blanks below.
Q1 Rating Q2 Rating Q3 Rating Incident
_____ _____ _____ DWI (no injury)
_____ _____ _____ DWI (with injuries)
_____ _____ _____ Fight
_____ _____ _____ Domestic Violence
A. WHO SHOULD BE FIRED? WHY?
B. WHO SHOULD BE DISCIPLINED BUT NOT FIRED? WHY?
5. At the end of the scenario, Jim mentions future plans to create a sort of employee code of
conduct that defines off-the-job behaviors that are not acceptable to the company. Legally, the
company can fire any of the workers in the scenario, even if it has no code of conduct in place.
But does the presence or absence of such a policy make a firing more or less fair? Or are there
some things that people should just know not to do?
A. MORE FAIR BUT SHOULD A COMPANY HAVE TO DEFINE
EVERYTHING?

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