The reference

The Situation

You have been with your present company for ten years and you are the most senior departmental manager in the organisation. A couple of years ago Robin Thornton was taken on to run one of the smaller departments. You worked well together and since you were more experienced you were expected to give him any advice he needed. Then, almost overnight, you became close friends when your wives gave birth to sons at the same hospital on the same day. That was more than a year ago and now you regularly meet for a beer at lunchtime in the 'local' and play bridge together every Wednesday evening.

Robin is ambitious and works with great enthusiasm. Unfortunately he overlooks the frequent, often expensive, mistakes he makes. You are senior to him, but not his direct superior. At first you tried to point out his mistakes, but he ignored you. Now you try to patch up his mistakes without anybody noticing.

One Wednesday evening you are surprised by Robin's request: 'Would you do me a favour? I'm applying for the same position as you've got, but at Pharmabeta's across the road. I know they tried to get you to take it, so they must think a lot of you. Well, since you don't want it, I thought I'd have a go, and I reckon a good reference from you would go a long way towards getting me the job. Can I use your name?'


What do you say? Choose A, B, or C, and then click on the link to go to the section number given. Do not look at other sections.

  A 'I'd be pleased to help Robin, but I think the name of the director of overseas sales would look a lot better on your application.'

Go to 5

  B 'I don't think I'm the person to ask, I'm afraid.'

Go to 7

  C 'If you think a reference from me would do you any good, please use my name.'

Go to 11