The Ethics of Getting Someone Fired: 5.36
Welcome to a very special theme week of Assistant/Atlas posts. This week, we'll examine the ins and outs of employee battles here in Hollywood, specifically: the concept of getting fired.
It's a subject with which I have some experience.
For now, we'll leave aside all questions as to how to go about getting someone fired, and just try to concentrate on the ethical dilemma at hand. And I'm gonna make it as gray-area as possible, just for fun. But please, find your own ethical compass on this one.
Nancy is the "someone" of the "getting someone fired". Keeping in mind my need for anonymity, I will simply state that Nancy is my immediate superior. She's been there a few months now, less than half as long as I have. Now, this is a slightly wonky situation because (that again, I can't really get into) that means she works part-time. Mostly because our company is "realigning" and the cheapskate bosses are trying to save money, and because they could outsource her job to a part-time position, they did.
But basically, since I'm now alone in the office thanks to a good co-worker's departure (which, for the record, was completely unrelated to my slow-motion promotion.) I have to deal with Nancy a lot. Like, more than anyone else.
So I suffer the most from her incompetence. But other people have noticed that she gets headaches a lot near the end of the day. That she panics easily and often. That she claims to be overworked even when we (myself and at least two others) wonder what work she could possibly have to do. After all, she rarely does any of the heavy lifting. She 'organizes' and 'manages' and 'edits' and such.
Leaving aside the fact that you have no reason to believe me, continue on this journey of supposition....
Suppose that she is pretty awful. Mostly lazy and therefore incompetent...but we all have our problems, right? I'm selfish, overly ambitious, and often tactless. And I don't even have a kid as an excuse. But she's not a single Mom-- her husband has a good job. And they travel all the time to exotic destinations-- more than even newfound jetsetter me.
So let's suppose the case isn't as clear cut as we'd like it to be. She isn't a horrific racist or sexually harassing me or not doing the job at all. She's just not nearly good enough at it. And it's making me crazy enough that I want to get her fired.
Let's just say it's really because she's a Debby Downer in an industry where you're paid to be UP. ALL THE TIME.
...BECAUSE IT MEANS SOMETHING, THAT'S WHY!
So here are the questions I'm asking myself...and I ask you, faithful readers, to put in your two commenting cents if you desire....
This can't be ethical-- me wanting to get Nancy fired, can it?
What does it take to call for someone's head? There have to be situations where's it's okay, right?
Should an underling ever call for the firing of his or her superior?
Later this week, we'll have "How to Tell If You're Getting Fired" plus, don't miss: "How to Get a Superior Fired!"
TECHNORATI TAGS: business, ethics, business management