Dulce has been with her organization for three years and has received outstanding performance evaluations. Farai came on board one full year later than did Dulce. Based upon what Farai has said, Dulce believes that Farai is earning the same amount of salary as does she, despite the fact that he is at a lower rank. Dulce has been fuming about Farai’s salary.

It appears objectively clear to everyone that Dulce has superior educational and experiential credentials. Rumor has it that Farai is not performing very well, although rumor also has it that Farai and the Vice President have become pretty chummy.

Dick, the Vice President, has come into Dulce’s office and says the following: “I wanted to be sure that you were told before the information is generally disseminated. We are promoting Farai to Director of the division. You know that you are invaluable in the work you do. We cannot afford to lose you to administrative matters that Farai will be performing. I hope that you will give Farai your full support. Thank you.”

Dulce responded, “Oh, if you had offered it to me, I would have declined. I don’t want administrative work.”

Case Discussion Questions:

1. Is Dulce’s behavior merely passive (unassertive) or passive aggressive? Why or how?

2. What effect is Dulce’s behavior having on Dick? What effect is Dulce’s behavior having on her and her working relationships?

3. If you were Dulce, what would you want? Create a script for Dulce that is assertive communication designed for effective negotiation.

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Answer 1:

Dulce’s behavior can be characterized as passively aggressive. Her exclamation of ‘Oh!’ and the subsequent statement that she wouldn’t have taken the job, even if it was offered to her demonstrate that she expected the job to be assigned to her and was unhappy that Farai was given the responsibility. She also had grudges against Farai and the negative...

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