On Tuesday, March 17, 2015, ZGAS hosted an original and innovative event—“How to Handle Difficult Workplace Situations.” The event gave student participants and attending EY professionals a break from classes and busy season, respectively.
During the event, seven students were paired with one EY professional and given case studies. With the support of the professionals, students worked through the cases and offered their solutions via short presentations, and thus attained a feel of difficult workplace situations.
At the event’s opening, Ms. Merilee Martin, EY Campus Recruiter, gave a brief speech in which she greeted students and discussed the event format. Following her introduction, five cases were presented by different teams. The cases consisted of a disagreement with a coworker, sick leave with multiple projects on hand, accepting a gift from a client, internal control, and internal transfer. After the presentations, EY professionals chose a winning team and presented them with EY swag.
The winning team presented on the internal transfer case. Their win came because the group presented in a fun and interesting manner; further, their strategy in which the team was divided into two groups showcasing opposing scenarios, worked very well. The conflict they targeted was an audit staff member being considered for a promotion. Before he/she gets the message about such consideration, he/she meets a partner from the advisory group and discusses the possibilities of transferring to the internal advisory line. In terms of the scenarios, one allowed the audit staff member to transfer smoothly; the other scenario displayed the hurdles existing in a not-so-smooth transition.
The key event takeaway was that in today’s business world, relationships, teamwork, communication and flexibility are crucial. Students entering the workforce should focus a great deal of energy in these areas because they will prove to be important not only upon first entering a profession, but throughout their careers.