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Exercise Resources (Hughes Goodearl)

Introductory comments for students.


Links to case readings.

Central Readings

Goodearl Introduction

Lisa Lightner Incident

Shirley Reddick Incident

AMRAAM Incident

Potential Background Readings


Life on the testing line

Quality Assurance

The Fraud Hotline

The chips

The chips in use

The tests


Whistleblower US Law

Specific exercise materials.

The ethics test worksheeet

Each of the following four option sets are associated with one of the four incidents listed in the central readings above.

Options for Goodearl Introduction


What should Goodearl do at this point?

Evaluate the following courses of action using the ethics and feasibility tests.

  1. She should not push the issue any further. This would require that she do exactly what LaRue tells and look the other way at any irregularities she should stumble across.
  2. She should have a one-on-one meeting with LaRue and explain, in as diplomatic a way as possible, her concerns with short changing the tests on the chips. She should make it clear that she is not trying to be disloyal but to help the company avoid the fallout that would result should this become public.
  3. Confront LaRue and tell him that if this nonsense continues, she will take the issue outside of Hughes. She should also add that if she is fired, she will sue Hughes, and him personally, for harassment.
  4. Quit her job. It is obvious that the working environment is deteriorating fast, and she will only be coerced into doing something illegal if she stays.
  5. Blow the whistle on her supervisors but keep it within Hughes. This would involve scheduling a meeting with a high level supervisor, probably Karl Reismueller, the head of the entire Division of Microelectronics.
  6. Your solution…

Options for Lisa Lightner Incident


What should Goodearl and Lightner do at this point?

A. Evaluate the following alternatives of action using the ethics and feasibility tests.

  1. She should do nothing more. She has already gone above and beyond the call of duty by putting her job in danger and angering her supervisors. However, if she is concerned about becoming an accomplice to an illegal act, she should document what has transpired thoroughly so she can show that she did everything she could short of blowing the whistle.
  2. She should do what Himmel suggested: try to work with LaRue. She and Lightner should go to him and try to find alternatives to skipping the chips. Maybe the testing process can be accelerated. Maybe the "girls" can offer to work overtime. She should not agree to short changing the tests but try to have alternatives to shipping the chips behind schedule.
  3. If LaRue and Saia want to play hardball then so be it. She and Lightner should consult a lawyer and document these incidents of harassment. Then they can together go to LaRue and threaten to go public if this nonsense doesn't stop. If LaRue gets angry (or if Saia gets angry) then they should be equally confrontational and say that they have enough documented evidence to sue for harassment.
  4. She and Lightner should quit. It is not worth fighting an organization that won't change, and at this point, if they don't quit then they become accomplices.
  5. Your solution…

B. Recall the solution you choose at the earlier decision point.

  1. Did you make the same decisions as Gooderal?
  2. If not, compare your solution to hers
  3. If so, did you make the right decision given the Lisa Lightner indicent?
  4. Would you change your first decision in light of this additional knowledge?


Options for Shirley Reddick Incident


How should Goodearl deal with her new boss?

A. Evaluate the following decision alternatives using the ethics and feasibility tests.

  1. She should do as Rhodes says and try to get along with everybody.
  2. She should be diplomatic with Rhodes but still insist that not properly testing chips and passing chips that have not been tested or have failed tests is not in anybody's interest.
  3. She should stand up to Rhodes and say that it is her business and to say that if she talks this way to her again, she will file a complaint of harassment.
  4. She should blow the whistle. In fact, she is obligated to do so, since there are severe public safety concerns that she cannot get resolved inside the company.
  5. She should resign.
  6. Your solution…

B. Given the Shirley Reddick incident, would you change anything about the decisions you reached at the end of parts one and two?


Options for AMRAAM Incident


What should Gooderal and Ibarra do with their evidence?

  1. They should schedule an interview with Karl Reismueller, the head of the Division of Microelectronics, and present it to him.
  2. They should blow the whistle by going either to the press or to the US government.
  3. They should keep this evidence in case this matter should ever become public. Then they could use it to keep from getting into trouble themselves.
  4. They should give up and do what they are told.
  5. Your solution…