I’m in charge of keeping track of my co-worker’s vacation time and other time off (doctor’s appointments, etc), and one or two workers are really abusing the company’s policies. For example, one guy called in sick with a “migraine”, but that day he posted on Facebook that he “had a great day playing hooky at the lake!” Sometimes it’s even more blatant, where they actually tell me to my face what they really did when they were supposed to be at the dentist or whatever. I don’t want to be Mr. Morality, but I kind of resent that they’re getting away with something I would never do because it’s just wrong. If I keep quiet, it feels like I’m just as guilty, but if I report it to my boss and he comes down on them, they’ll know he got the information from me. When I was given this responsibility I didn’t really know these people. Now they’re my friends. What should I do?
A.You have three choices: Continue to keep quiet, talk to the boss, or talk to your co-workers. Keeping quiet is risky since, besides compromising your own integrity, you are colluding with employees who are, in effect, stealing from the company. Perhaps if you talk to your boss about it, and explain the awkward situation it puts you in, the two of you can come up with a way to bring the information to light that doesn’t point the finger at you (some sort of external audit or rotating the task for awhile to mask your involvement). Or You Could Be In Serious Trouble [/inset]But it seems to me the best solution is for you to level with your co-workers. If you don’t want to bring up the “morality” part of it, just point out to them that because of your job responsibilities, their actions could get you into serious legal trouble…and that’s the truth! They probably have never thought about it like that. And if they really are your friends, they won’t continue to put you in this position.