Watson Inc.: A Case Study On Diversity
David Diltz, Haley Mull, Logan Snyder, Grace Sperry, Rachael Steed, Alyssa Williams
1a. While Watson’s Marketing VP Brian Morris was on vacation, an issue arose concerning two employees, Emily and Hector, and a manager, Jack. Both employees asked Jack for a recommendation to help further their careers, but Jack passed them over. Hector and Emily felt Jack was being unfair and went to Morris to contest Jack’s position. To solve this interpersonal conflict, Morris must consider all three perspectives.
Emily is an older, single mother who worked part-time in the past in order to help her son who was struggling in school. She now wants to complete Watson’s …show more content…
Three initiatives that could be taken in order to address the cause of the problem include creating a group to review employees applying for a promotion or program, shifting the culture of Watson from socially conservative to more accepting of diversity, and lastly firing Jack. One cause of the problem was that Jack did not embrace diversity. Creating an applicant review group that understands and embraces diversity will help prevent discrimination. Additionally, having multiple opinions can diminish the effects of bias. As mentioned before, Jack claimed Hector should not get the promotion because the company is “conservative.” As a second initiative, changing the company culture to more socially liberal and accepting would prevent anyone from using this argument as a reason to deny minorities opportunities. It would also help prepare the company for the increasingly “diversity positive” world and future and open them up to new clients sharing the same commitment to diversity. In order to change the company culture, Watson should slowly implement diversity training programs while refusing to be lenient on those who reject diversity. Furthermore, top Watson executives must both articulate and practice the new inclusive strategies for the program to be successful. The third and most controversial initiative is to fire Jack since he was the source of the problem. Additionally, in reviewing his rhetoric and actions, it seems Jack is ageist, sexist, and racist. Firing Jack would set a precedent that biased practices (racist/sexist/ageist actions and comments) are unwelcome at Watson, Inc. If Watson did decide to directly embrace diversity, the action of firing Jack would also show how committed Watson is to diversity. Finally, firing Jack would align with the idea that, “if you can’t change the people, change the