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Stay Out of Feared Bias Lawsuit Thicket

May 23, 1999

Q I am competing for a promotion in the company where I work. The person above me on the seniority ladder is African American and claims she will file a discrimination lawsuit against the company if I am promoted before her.

I am a responsible, dedicated worker. The other person is irresponsible, often calls in sick and seems to lack motivation.

I believe my managers are afraid they will be involved in a lawsuit if they promote me over her. What should I do?

--M.G., Monrovia


A Stay out of it. You should focus on your job and continue to be a dedicated, responsible worker. Let your supervisors worry about their promotion decision and the threat of a potential lawsuit.

Hopefully, they will not be swayed by such threats, and will do the right thing and promote the most qualified person.

--Ron Riggio, director

Kravis Leadership Institute

Claremont McKenna College

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