An office worker had a record of frequent absence. He used all his vacation and sick leave days and frequently requested additional leave without pay. His supervisor and co-workers expressed great frustration because his absenteeism caused bottlenecks in paperwork, created low morale in the office, and required others to do his work in addition to their own. On the other hand, he felt he was entitled to take his earned time and additional time off without pay. Was he right?
The office worker is wrong is manifesting a behavior of frequent absenteeism. As an employee he is expected to be governed by the policies and code of conduct and discipline of the organization where he works. Usually, the policies and procedures; as well as the code of conduct and discipline explicitly defines the number of days that allow the employee to take official leave of absence due to sickness or for vacation. Any number of days beyond the stipulated period could be considered excessive and detrimental to the performance of his duties; as well as impacting negatively to the achievement of the organization’s goals. As such, the excessive absences exhibited by the employee is definitely wrong and not morally or ethically justified.
First, it is wrong as it defies the expected compliance of his responsibilities; thus, is also considered violating the ethical codes of conduct in terms of duties as an employee. The fact that he applied as an office workers makes him bound to comply with his job responsibilities. His frequent absenteeism has evidently affect the performance of this work. When he is absent, the work that he is supposed to do is left behind and other workers are then made to do his work – which is again wrong, since it is beyond their scope of responsibilities. The lack of productivity and performance on his part, due to frequent absenteeism, was noted to be contributory to low morale and a load of backlogs or bottlenecks. These are signs of his inability to contribute positively to the achievement of organization goals. Thus, as per policy and code of conduct and discipline, and as Augustine and Aquinas would have done to solve this problem, his excessive absences should actually be sanctioned with penalties to correct the behavior; otherwise, other potential applicants to his position could replace him and do the required duties in a more productive and efficient manner. It should be noted that he is paid to work and not to be absent from his work.
Rhonda enjoys socializing with fellow employees at work, but their discussion usually consists of gossiping about other people, including several of her friends. At first Rhonda feels uncomfortable talking in this way about people she is close to, but then she decided it does no real harm and she feels no remorse for joining in.
Gossiping about other people is morally and ethically wrong. It entails spreading malicious words on actions and behaviors of other people behind their backs. The right thing to do is actually to confront people on any apparent wrong-doing with a pure intent of correcting the mistakes or behavior; so that the same mistakes would not be committed.
In this regard, Rhonda should not engage at gossiping, especially at work. There are other productive ways to socialize with fellow employees and gossiping is not a productive endeavor. Likewise, as employees they are supposed to spend their time in compliance with their respective responsibilities. Any spare time or leisure time could also be spent productively and not by gossiping about other people.
What Rhonda ought to do is to emphasize to her fellow employees that gossiping is wrong and that they should not engage in this activity. If they think that this endeavor does no real harm, they are mistaken; because, by gossiping they are not helping these people to correct their mistakes. As such, as recommended, and consistent with what Augustine and Aquinas would do, they should all stop gossiping about other people. What she and her fellow workers should do is to approach other people, who they think have committed mistakes or misbehaved, in a private manner. Meaning, they should confront the errant person privately and communicate the mistakes made or misbehavior in a nice; yet straightforward manner. This approach would help the errant person to correct the mistakes and be able to live life in a more productive and rewarding manner; without having to be subjected to ridicule or being made fun of through gossiping.