The Partiality of Friendship
Jim has the responsibility of filling a position in his firm. His friend Paul has applied and is qualified, but someone else seems even more qualified. Jim wants to give the job to Paul, but he feels guilty, believing that he ought to be impartial. That's the essence of morality, he initially tells himself. This belief is, however, rejected, as Jim resolves that friendship has a moral importance that permits, and perhaps even requires, partiality in some circumstances. So he gives the job to Paul.
Was he right?
The Partiality of Friendship
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- I have had to hire people to work for me before. First I have to say...
hiring friend or relatives really isn't the way to go. Maybe if they are not
going to work with you, then that would be different. They tend to take
However, if they are both qualified for the same position, and you are only the hiring manager, then by all means...hire your friend.
Even tho they are not as qualified as the other person...they ARE qualified for the position, and your friendship trumps the extra experience.
- I agree, he did the right thing. If he gives the job to a friend who wasn't qualified, then I think he would be wrong.
The choice to hire Paul was easy. The hard part is when you have to fire your friend.
When I was working in Los Angeles, I had to fire a friend of mine, Hector. Letting someone go is usually pretty easy for me (since I am a @@@@@). This time though was HORRIBLE. Hector was the 1st person I hired and pretty much my 1st friend in LA. His mom even watched my son, who was 2 then. The funny thing was as he walked in the door he could see in my face that I was holding back the tears. The good thing was that it didn't effect our friendship at all because he knew he messed up.
Oh, the reason I had to let him go was I had met with my district and regional managers earlier that morning and there were SEEDS in the back room!!! Hector had a good story though, he told them they were for a seed cultivating class he was taking. LMAO!!!!!
- oh thats too bad shell...i too know its hard.
i had to do it too, but i didn't feel bad. i had my own auto detailing business, and hired my significant other...who was less than helpful.
after alot of thought of how miserable my life was going to be when i did it...
the axe was swung, and i was right...my life turned into living hell.
but, no regrets. business is business. friends/lovers sometimes have no place in business. if they cannot be professional, and hurt the business...bye bye baby
- lipstick_xoxos wrote:
I would hire a friend in a heart beat!! It would have to be a good friend that i know would not abuse our relationship. If you can't help your friends who can you help?
For those friends that take advantage of you in the work force........they were never a friend to begin with.
believe it or not lips, no matter how close people are, family and friends are the ones that take advantage of you the most, because they think they can. sad but true...
- Jim did the right thing...
I agree with Lips on this about if I can't help my friends, who can I help?
Sure...sometimes friends and family do take advantages of you but again,
they are the ones who will always be there for you no matter what. It will take some good long time to get to know the stranger(worker) so it has a good side of hiring your friend, at least you know the person better than a stranger...
Nothing is more important or valuable than a true friendship and if I had the power to give a job to one of my good friend, I won't think twice.
- No, he is not right.
He wrongly assumes this decision will not effect the friendship. There is a high probability the friendship will decline or end all together.
Also, this how the "good old boy network" worked. Giving jobs to less qualified friends boxed out women and minorities in business for years.
So, Jim has committed an "immoral" act.
Perhaps Jims' friend is himself a minority (or a woman with a very culturally unsuited name). In that case it may not be so immoral - according to those criteria.
- Replied by
- at March 12, 2010, 20:24:50
- last active 8 months ago
I think you're right about it jeapordizing the relationship, but I don't think it's inevitable that the relationship will deteriorate to the point of destruction. There are bound to be plenty of cases where these situations have worked out quite well and the relationship between the two friends or relatives has grown even stronger. I don't know Jim, or Paul, so I can't say with any certainty what may transpire between them. I could speculate, based on my own experiences and information - but that's all it would be. The future nature of their relationship in this case would surely depend on the nature of the individuals themselves and the situations that emerge during the course of their employment together.
So immoral seems to me to be too strong a word to describe his decision. If there was an extremely high probability, or even certainty, of the relationship going down, and Jim knew this in advance - or if Jim were willingly taking unfair advantage of Pauls' need for employment to Pauls' future detriment - then immoral would be a good description. In this case though 'unwise' might be a better description. A lot of good relationships do fall apart in situations like this - but certainly not all of them.
Barring any portents of that event happening in the future though, I think his decision was good and entirely moral or ethical. In fact, it may have been the best decision. The crux in these cases, I believe, is qualification. As stated, Paul was sufficiently qualified for the job. The other applicant was too (maybe overqualified?), as were probably any number of other people, but he is also unknown. Jim probably has only the brief encounters of the interview process, which are extremely superficial and possibly contrived, to assess his character and its suitability to the position and the company. He already knows Paul and should not even be considering him if there are any issues in terms of his character or ethics that would negatively impact the company.
And I tend to agree with the sentiment "If you can't help your friends, then who can you help?" ... as long as they are qualified (or even could soon be qualified - depending on the position). The good ol' boy network too often neglected this criteria to the detriment of the workforce and society as a whole. Familiarity should not be the sole criteria of inclusion, just as it should not be a criteria for exclusion - in most cases.
Besides, not hiring his friend could be just as detrimental to their relationship, or even more so, than giving him preferential consideration. I'd be pretty pissed off if I were in Pauls' position and knew I had been passed over because Jim feared some kind of conflict of interest or moral horn. Especially if I really needed that job. More often than not when looking for work it's not what you know but who you know. Most everybody knows this - or will realize it at some point in the future. So, when even that starts to fail, then what the hell do you have?
I have to agree with wnanhee and brad, both well said and Lips you are right, i've read brads writings before and his passion in expression is outstanding.
- Replied by
- at March 12, 2010, 22:11:05
- last active 5 days ago
To be very honest and most people wouldn't say this but deep inside i would be hurt if he didn't choose me, i'd get over it.. but it would still hurt me, it's just one of those things... of course he is my friend and did what he had to do.. but.. it would just be a feeling i'd have...
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