They are victims of office gossip because they were being talked about behind their backs by their other co-workers.
Their reputations have already been tarnished because of the gossip being spread by Sharkey. Sharkey does not gain anything in spreading the gossip because even if he has evidence to prove it, he should have gone to the HR and discussed the issue instead of talking to his co-workers about it. The HR will be in a better position to investigate the matter. HR should handle the problem because they can directly confront both Cypher and Sharpe without being subjective. They will be more objective in handling the case unlike Sharkey who has an ax to grind against Sharpe because she got the promotion he wants.
Applying the second question of Professor Badaracco, one sees that the rights of Cypher and Sharpe have been violated. Sharkey’s right to question the promotion is something which he can exercise but he must go through the proper channels. The proper channel is to go to the HR department and raise his concern to them. He can also go to his immediate supervisor to ask the reasons why Sharpe was promoted instead of him.
Assuming that Cypher and Sharpe has no relationship as construed by Sharkey and the HR is faced with a decision of whether to fire Sharkey as proposed by Sam, the HR should weigh the consequences of its decision. As Professor Badaracco suggested, it should be guided by the question of “what will work in the world as it is?” (2002). The HR should resolve the issue by taking into account its decision’s effect on the organization as a whole and how its decision will impact on all the concerned individuals. If the other office workers will find out that the promotion of Sharpe is due to her relationship with Cypher, then the morale of the other office workers will be affected. They will think negatively of management because of the questionable criteria for