Mark is the assistant manager of a book store that is part of a national chain, and it is the week of Thanksgiving. He is one of the store’s six salaried employees, and the others are fulltime or part-time hourly employees. Besides Mark and the general manager, there is Dick, the other assistant manager, who is getting ready to accept a position elsewhere and who has the accumulated time to give notice at any minute. There are also two section leaders and one community events coordinator. The latter has already given notice to the general manager that she will be vacating her position at the end of December, but there has been no public announcement about this forthcoming vacancy.
The much coveted salaried positions are announced in each store when they are being vacated, but employees usually know before the posting if someone in management is planning to leave. There is fierce competition among hourly employees to secure such positions since there is a huge pay advantage for those who move into management.
When Mark comes to work today, he finds out that Dick has given the general manager his letter of resignation, effective immediately. He is clearing out his locker when Mark arrives, and the general manager is in a state of shock. He has asked Mark to meet with him to figure out what to do to find a replacement—fast. Since the chain has the policy of posting vacancies and moving applicants through the interview process on both the in-house and district level when it is a management position that becomes vacant, what the present management needs most right now is time and knowledgeable staff to carry on store operations at this busiest time of the year in retail.
(Many of the employees are new hires who have come on board just for the holidays. Much of their time has been spent reading massive employee manuals, and their actual floor time has been minimal. Most of these are high school and college students who will...