Thirteen Interesting “What If” Situations – How Would YOU Respond?
Please feel free to give your opinion on these situations even if you’re not playing Thursday Thirteen. There are no right or wrong answers here – it’s a question of scruples and what would you do?
1. Your boss is impressed by employees who work extra-long hours. Do you stay late doing unnecessary jobs just to score points with your boss?
My answer: Then my boss would be really impressed with me then because I’m the type of person who puts in extra hours anyway. Why? Because I have a strong work ethic and I wouldn’t feel comfortable doing a half-ass job or not giving my best. So yes, I’d stay late, but not to earn brownie points with my boss, but because that’s just how I roll. If it wasn’t necessary, then I wouldn’t stay late. If I’m doing my job, and doing it well, then my boss would recognize my efforts WITHOUT resorting to brown-nosing tactics.
2. You’re a veteran of the armed services. Your son is a pacifist. He asks you to support his petition as a conscientious objector by writing a letter backing up his claim. Do you?
My answer: No. My son has every right to think and act for himself. If he feels strongly about this issue, then I would respect that. But I wouldn’t compromise my own beliefs in order to placate my son. I would simply explain how I felt, thank him for asking me and then politely refuse based on my differing opinion. Just because he’s my offspring doesn’t mean we have to see eye-to-eye on everything.
3. You are a doctor. Driving home, you see an accident. People are seriously injured. You’re not covered for malpractice in such cases. Do you stop to provide care?
My answer: I might hesitate because I know how sue-happy people are, but I’m fairly certain my conscious would not allow me to simply walk away and not do anything. Not when I have a moral obligation and the knowledge to help the injured. Though I could understand why someone would walk away, I think you would have to be pretty cold-hearted to do so.
4. One of your professors is incompetent. Some classmates have prepared a petition asking for his replacement. Do you sign it?
My answer: No. I would go through the proper channels first (i.e. the head of the department) and file a formal complaint first. I’m assuming after that point, the department would investigate the professor and perhaps put him/her on probation depending on what they found. But going through the proper channels, though sometimes frustrating and time-consuming, is nearly always the right course of action in a situation like this.
5. Your 20th-year high school reunion is next week. You want to see old friends, but you’re 30 pounds overweight and you really look your age. Would you attend?
My answer: This one is a hard one for me because I’m fairly certain that I wouldn’t be in this situation to begin with. I have an issue with my weight; I’ve always been painfully aware of my weight so I have to say, I wouldn’t be 30 pounds overweight to begin with. I’m simply too stubborn to allow that to happen. As far as looking my age, well, other than plastic surgery (which is never an option with me), I’d just have to deal with it – what else can you do? But this is a what-if situation so I’ll play along. I think it depends on the “friends.” Were they good friends or simply people I hung out with but didn’t really belong with? If they were good friends, I’d probably go simply because they would most likely accept me, warts and all. If they weren’t that great of friends to begin with, I most likely wouldn’t go because I’d feel intimidated.
6. You’re a high school football coach. In the first half of the game, the opposing team hits your players after the whistle is blown. No penalty is called. Do you instruct your players to use the same tactics in the second half of the game?
My answer: I’d be tempted to because if I’m a coach that would mean I cared about the kids as if they were my own. And we all know how defensive we get when other people try to harm our children – the whole momma bear syndrome. However, what sort of lesson would I be teaching those kids? That it’s okay to resort to underhanded tactics when the going gets tough? No, I’d simply alert the referee what was going on and keep an eagle eye on future plays. This would be a good lesson to teach the kids that life is not fair sometimes and that’s okay, you have to roll with the punches sometimes. But it’s NOT okay to just give up and allow others to take advantage of us – we’d get in there and fight to the death and by the rules.
7. While friends are away on vacation, you have promised to feed their cats each day. It has become inconvenient for you to feed them daily. Do you put out large food portions and come every third or fourth day instead?
My answer: So I’m inconvenienced – big deal. Life is full of inconveniences and the bottom line is I made a promise to my friends so I will keep that promise. IF the opportunity presented itself and I had a chance to speak to my friends, I’d ask them if it was okay if I went over and fed them every other day – just for time’s sake if nothing else. But if my friends didn’t feel comfortable with that arrangement, then I would go everyday. They’re my friends; I wouldn’t want them to be stressed on their vacation because they were worried about their pets. I abhor being the cause of anyone’s stress.
8. A friend borrows $100 from you. Several months pass and the debt is not repaid. Do you ask your friend for the money?
My answer: Hell yes I’d ask! I’d start off the process by joking around. And if my friend didn’t get the hint, then I’d get serious. “Dude, you think I pull bills from my armpits? Pay up.”
9. You make a generous pledge in a charity fund-raising drive. Later, you have unexpected expenses. Do you honor your pledge?
My answer: Oooh, tough one. Well first of all, I would never pledge more than I could realistically afford. I’m boring that way. However, if something came up and I couldn’t afford to give up the money, I’d pay what I could and keep paying in installments until my pledge amount had been satisfied. Hey, if you can’t put your money where your mouth is, then keep your mouth shut. That’s my motto. *grin* I wonder how often people pledge and then don’t pay up?
10. Your company decides to initiate a voluntary drug-testing program for its employees. Do you support it?
My answer: Absolutely, positively yes. Drugs do not belong in the work place. People who come to work high/drunk put everyone around them at risk. Go home and sleep it off – better yet, seek help.
11. Your boss demands that you fire a subordinate. You don’t think that the dismissal is justified. Do you put your own job on the line and refuse?
My answer: I would hope it wouldn’t come to that. If I didn’t agree with the decision, I’d talk to my boss about it. Perhaps there are issues I’m unaware of or perhaps my boss is unaware of circumstances that might affect this person’s job performance. But the bottom line? It’s my boss’ decision – I’d have to abide by his/her wishes in the end, especially if my paycheck went to feed my family.
12. A fellow worker is injured in an accident on the job. You’re a witness and can give testimony that is damaging to your company. Do you come forward with the information?
My answer: Most likely, yes. If a co-worker was injured and it was the company’s fault, then most likely whatever it was that injured the worker would need to be addressed so other workers wouldn’t get hurt. If I didn’t say something, and more people were injured, I’d never forgive myself.
13. While visiting your hometown, you casually meet your old high school sweetheart. You have lunch together. Do you tell your spouse?
My answer: Oh wow, another toughie. My first reaction is no. But why? I mean, we’re just meeting for lunch, nothing is happening, it’s all quite innocent – so why the hesitation? Probably because I’m not sure I would want to know if he met an ex-girlfriend (or wife, yes, he’s been married before). It’s not that I don’t trust him, but I simply wouldn’t want to know because then I would agonize over what they talked about, or any old emotions they rehashed, you know?
However, I trust my husband and I hope he trusts me, so I would probably tell him just so there wasn’t any possibility of him finding out from a third party. However, I would set the stage, so to speak, and choose my time wisely.
Sometimes, timing is everything. 😀
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