The Vacation Request


Tom Blair has a week’s vacation coming and really wants to take it the third week in

May, which is the height of the bass fishing season. The only problem is that two of

the other five members of his department have already requested and received

approval from their boss, Luther Jones, to take off that same week. Afraid that Luther

would not approve his request, Tom decided to forward his request directly to Harry

Jensen, who is Luther’s boss and who is rather friendly to Tom (Tom has taken Harry

fishing on several occasions). Not realizing that Luther has not seen the request,

Harry approves it. Several weeks pass before Luther finds out, by accident, that Tom

has been approved to go on vacation the third week of May.

The thing that really bugs Luther is that this is only one of many instances in which

his subordinates have gone directly to Harry and gotten permission to do something.Just last week, in fact, he overheard a conversation in the washroom to the effect that,

“If you want anything approved, don’t waste time with Luther; go directly to Harry.”


1. What should Harry have done?

2. Who is at fault, Harry or Tom?

3. What if Luther confronts Harry with the problem and he simply brushes it off by

saying he is really only helping?


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