Vivek Paranjpe, Consultant & Strategic HR Advisor to Reliance Industries answers professional and ethical dilemmas faced by our readers at their workplace.
Question: I am a recruitment manager of a growing IT company. I smell foul play in the recent activities of one of our recruitment head and suspect that he is taking money for certain middle and senior management appointments in the company. While I do not have any evidence against this, my instincts are very strong and I am uncomfortable not doing anything about such unethical practices. Should I blow the whistle and take it to his boss?
Answer: Whenever you see unethical practices in the corporation, it is always advisable to blow the whistle and bring it to the management’s notice. While raising issues of this nature is certainly your responsibility, you have to also ensure that you need to take responsibility and ensure that the issues raised are well -founded. Raising issues only on the basis of your instincts is not advisable. You must have some evidence and be willing to participate in the investigation process.
If you believe that one of the recruitment head is taking money, and you have no evidence, it will not be right to blow the whistle. It will be a good idea to just share your instincts with the head of HR and tell him/ her why you suspect the possibility of foul play. Let the management determine how they will like to undertake the investigation and take the matter forward. It is unethical to come to any conclusion without any evidence and merely based on suspicion. It will jeopardize your credibility in the system and make you look rather silly and immature if you do not have any direct or circumstantial evidence. So gather some evidence, do your home work and support your instincts with some facts and data. This way you will gain respect from your peers, superiors and subordinates.
You can post your questions to Vivek by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org