While courts seldom want to second-guess employment decisions, sometimes employers provoke that scrutiny.
That can happen, for example, when companies rely on the “old boy network” to promote from within instead of using a more formal, organized process. It’s not that you can never use an informal process. It’s just that if you do, you have to make sure you actually consider everyone who has expressed an interest in the job.
Recent case: Nicholas Licausi, who was a senior director at Symantec, was 65 years old when his position was terminated. Symantec said the reason was a reduction in force, but Licausi said it was age discrimination.
He sued, alleging that another, younger employee had been picked for a promotion during the reorganization that accompanied the reduction in force.
The company said that its managers had selected the most qualified person for the promotion and that the decision process had been a fast one because the manager in charge of the reduction in force had a very short time frame in which to make many cost-reduction decisions. Symantec didn’t post the position, but relied on the manager’s informal assessment of the best candidate.
Licausi pointed out that he had told the manager he was interested in promotion opportunities. He argued that since the job wasn’t posted, his expressed interest was the same as an application. He said the company had to justify its decision by showing that it had legitimate, nondiscriminatory reasons for picking the employee it did.
Fortunately for the company, the court ultimately concluded that Symantec had not discriminated because it had good reasons for picking the candidate it selected. (Licausi v. Symantec, No. 08-60544, SD FL, 2009)
Like what you've read? ...Republish it and share great business tips!
Attention: Readers, Publishers, Editors, Bloggers, Media, Webmasters and more...
We believe great content should be read and passed around. After all, knowledge IS power. And good business can become great with the right information at their fingertips. If you'd like to share any of the insightful articles on BusinessManagementDaily.com, you may republish or syndicate it without charge.
The only thing we ask is that you keep the article exactly as it was written and formatted. You also need to include an attribution statement and link to the article.
" This information is proudly provided by Business Management Daily.com: http://www.businessmanagementdaily.com/10003/use-formal-process-to-promote-from-within "
- Adopt an anti-harassment policy and plan—before workplace malice gets out of hand
- 'How may I insult you?' Rude salespeople ignite bias suits
- NJLAD only covers employees who work in N.J.
- Try your best, but don't worry that honest mistakes will cost you a lawsuit
- When posting jobs, spell out negatives as well as positives