Skip to content

Anyone in HR?

March 14, 2008

Remember those essay questions from Business Legal in college? Here’s one for today:

You work for Company A. You decide to leave and go work for Company B.

Your district supervisor at Company A is married to a person who will be a peer manager at Company B.

You have a conversation with your district supervisor at Company A and when he asks what Company B is offering you, presumably so that he can up the ante for you at Company A, you tell him that they are matching your current pay and benefits at Company A. Your district supervisor at Company A discloses that information to his wife, who will be your peer manager at Company B.

She, in turn, tells several other peer managers at Company B, and they all descend on the store manager at Company B, demanding an increase to match your supposed salary. The store manager approaches you as you go in to complete paperwork to start your new job and is concerned about the information circulating. The store manager tries to deal with the situation by saying, “Everyone talks big when they leave a company,” and in general blowing off the other managers’ concerns as rumor, but you are really hacked that your manager at Company A disclosed what you thought was a confidential conversation. Now you feel like your integrity is in question, perhaps even your future, at Company B.

What do you do?

10 Comments leave one →
  1. March 14, 2008 5:31 am

    First: My work title: HR Serivces / Aminstrative Manger.

    You are correct that it is a confidential conversation. The next question to you, how far do you want to take it? Do you just want someone to say yes it was wrong? If so, let me be that person. If you want to have action taken against the person, look at the situation and decide what will you lose and what will you gain from the situation. Is that risk worth it? If that answer is yes, then file a complaint with company A’s supervisor’s boss.

    Its a prime example of bad business practice but there is very little that will actually happen and I’m not sure if it is worth burning your bridges if Company B becomes problematic. You might been Company A for references.

  2. March 14, 2008 5:32 am

    that should have read: You might need Company A for references.

  3. Tulip Girl permalink
    March 14, 2008 5:32 am

    Not good at all. Of course we know that the District person at Company A should never have shared with his wife, but then for her to tell others at Company B. There are some serious issues here…

  4. March 14, 2008 5:53 am

    I would wonder if that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

    Do you really want to work for a company whose staff, that is supposed to be keeping confidential information confidential… can spread such information like a prairie fire?

    It’s a very unique and unusual situation and I’d be leery about the situations now at both Company A and Company B.

    The sad reality is that the root cause of the problem – was you. The information that is assumed to be confidential became “declassified” the moment you told the supervisor at Company A of your offer.

    My guess is that you may ended up looking bad at BOTH companies.

    Good luck navigating those waters!

  5. March 14, 2008 6:32 am

    WOW – you haven’t even started yet there’s drama already??? I don’t have any advice but I think everyone above has made some valid points.

    I’m curious, did you know the manager at Company A was married to the Company B manager before or after all this? Because apparently Mgr A wasn’t trying to counteroffer, he was being nosy.

    Mgr B is very foolish – what did she hope to gain by telling everyone else? That everyone would get an increase because a new mgr is supposedly making more than them? HA HA HA HA, right that always works.

    Do you have the option of staying at company A while you look elsewhere? If you do go to company B you *may* have to deal with coworker resentment for a while.

  6. March 14, 2008 6:42 am

    Um…go find Company C?

  7. March 14, 2008 7:04 am

    So let me first clarify that this isn’t me. I have been at my current employer for 2 1/2 years now and don’t plan to go anywhere else. I’m really happy there, with the possible exception of trips to Canada. 🙂

    I did, however, offer to post this little quandary because I just knew you all in the blogosphere would have some great advice I could pass on to this person.

    I don’t think this person cares much about burning bridges with Company A. Poor business practice all the way around is one of the primary reasons for leaving, the term that this person has been there isn’t very long, and this person will not need them as a reference.

    I agree that Manager B is very foolish. I think it might end up costing her quite a bit–if not her job, then at least a lot of credibility and the permanent title of Chief Pot Stirrer. I think that was a CLM (Career Limiting Move, for those of you that haven’t read my Corporate Lingo Bingo post from way back when) for her.

    And while I agree with Mister M that this person, in hindsight, shouldn’t have said anything to Manager A, I have always disclosed that information, in confidence, to management when I have left a position. I think it’s pretty standard for them to ask what you’re getting to leave and try to do what they can to keep you if you’re a good employee, which this person absolutely has been.

    I appreciate your insight on the deal. What a sticky situation, eh?

  8. lyndaspix permalink
    March 14, 2008 12:09 pm

    A sticky situation indeed. Manager B certainly didn’t rise to her Manager status by using her sage wisdom in making decisions.

    I feel a case of Acute J******ism is the appropriate diagnosis here. (Know what I mean? :))

  9. March 15, 2008 1:37 am

    Which way was the train A going?

    I work in medicine….I’d like a virus Question please…

  10. March 15, 2008 8:02 pm

    Donna TOTALLY stole my answer.

    But on the serious side (glad it isn’t you!) I am the type who wants everything in the open even though it is hard because I also hate conflict. I would want to have open communication at both Company A and B about how the information passed and made things uncomfortable for me, not to mention was unprofessional. Pillow talk and salary talk should never meet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: