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CASE #1 Alice's Expense Account

Alice is just starting a sales position with a basket manufacturing company. She is the only female salesperson in the firm. After her first business trip, one of the senior salesmen reviewed her travel expenses and advised her to pad the amounts to make them compatible with the claims of the other sales personnel. To justify the additional expenses, he told her how to falsify receipts and mileage. Unknown to the other employees, the firm was owned by Alice's grandparents and she did not wish to divulge this family connection. Falsifying her expenses seemed unethical to Alice. She does not wish to do it and she certainly does not wish to cheat her grandparents.

If you were Alice , what is your best course of action under these circumstances? Please click on one of the following options.

  1. Report to the manager of sales department what the senior salesmen have asked you to do. Say that it has made you feel uncomfortable as you don't wish to behave unethically.
  2. Approach the top management (your grandparents) quietly and secretly. Explain what is happening with padding the expense accounts and suggest that they develop a plan as to how to change this prevailing practice.
  3. Confront the senior salesperson and say that you would not falsify the expenses because you think it's unethical. Say that if he continues pushing you to follow the practice, you will have to let the management know what is going on. You hope that the issue of your compliance with the norms of the informal group will be dropped.
  4. Follow the norm of the sales team for several months in order to maintain a good relationship with the other sales personnel in the department. You try to justify your actions to overclaim the travel expenses by considering that it is just part of the overall compensation for the sales team.