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Foremost Department Stores Inc.

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Authors: Dave Shaw, Elizabeth M.A. Grasby – Originally written by Professor Jeffrey Gandz

Ryan Gregson, vice president of the newly formed customer service department of Foremost Department Stores Inc. (Foremost), must decide what to do about a potential candidate for a key senior position in his department. The candidate, Dianne Reilly, has very strong credentials for the job and appears to be an excellent fit, but a recent discussion with her current regional manager uncovers that she had cancer. Although the cancer is in remission, Reilly still receives treatment annually. Gregson is warned that the stress of the new job might trigger a serious downturn in Reilly’s health. He is concerned both for Reilly’s health and what would happen to the work in his department if she was not able to perform well due to illness.

A secondary issue faced by Gregson is the task of achieving “buy-in” from the other departments in this functionally structured organization. Ultimately, it is fundamental that the customer service department succeed if Foremost is to compete successfully against its major competitors, including the most recent major retail entrant, Target.

Teaching Objectives

  1. To introduce students to key ethical issues in selection and job placement.
  2. To sensitize students to issues managers face – in this case, trying to balance obligations and duties to employees with obligations and duties to other stakeholders.

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Tags: Human Resources & Organizational Behaviour

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