A meeting was conducted with senior leadership at the law firm to discuss which of the three nominated employees should actually make partner. In this meeting, different attitudes regarding certain human resources policies were quite mixed as were the reactions from the attending leaders about which employees could provide the most long-term value in the role of partner.
The main issue in this case is that there is a lack of unity when it comes to decision-making regarding who to elect as partner in the group. This is an organizational culture where policy is open to multitudes of different interpretations and nobody seems to have a clear handle on how these policies should be communicated regarding promotion opportunities. For example, the part-time employee up for partner nomination was not necessarily informed that moving to part-time status would impact her potential for reaching partner. None of the senior leaders can seem to agree on whether this is beneficial for the business long-term or whether it actually causes more harm in areas of corporate employee dedication. There are concerns within the senior leadership group that promoting Julie, the part-time employee in question, could set a policy precedent which gives too much flexibility to part-time staffers and could impact their ability to effectively carry out the role of partner. This division at senior leadership level is noticeable at the colleague level and at the employee level when they have access to read the meeting minutes. In terms of organizational behavior and culture, the lack of senior leadership unity regarding policy creation and implementation and their belief about how human resources impacts the business creates a culture of division.
The process of promoting an individual to partner also seems to be ritualistic at the senior level, where they feel they must perform this annual