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High profile employer equals higher sanctions- is it justifed?


We all make mistakes at work, and serious errors can get us into trouble. Indeed, as per the case of Adesokan v Sainsbury’s Supermarkets that a single incident of negligence can – if serious enough – lead to summary dismissal.

So, how would you deal with an employee who had a very important role to play at a televised public event and – for example – handed a movie star the wrong envelope? Would you regard such a high profile and embarrassing error as so serious that you would see no alternative but to dismiss? Or would you take a more lenient view and consider, what with one thing and another, that the employee had suffered enough?.

We don’t know how PwC will deal with the rather high profile debacle that its employees were involved in at the Oscars – although the initial finding that the proper protocols ‘were not observed’ does not seem to bode well for the employees concerned. Employment law in California is of course very different from employment law in the UK, but in either location a mistake that attracts so much public attention and leads to so much damaging publicity is likely to be somewhat ‘career-limiting’.

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