Case Study 5 We Googled You

Temi Bambose
Shari Shaw Leibert
Judith Lewis
November 8, 2010
 Fred Westen, Hathaway Jones’ CEO
 Owner, Hathaway Jones
 Virginia Flanders, VP of Human Resources
 Hathaway Jones’ senior executive team
 Hathaway Jones’ employees and customers
 Mimi Brewster, promising candidate
 John Brewster, Mimi’s father
 Vision to expand business in China
 Mimi is Fred’s preferred candidate
 “HR” uncovered protest information on internet about
Mimi regarding China and WTO
 Fred needs strategy for pushing into China; should he
roll the dice by hiring Mimi or seek other options
 Fred Westen
Brought in from outside company; clashes with lifers
Procured candidate from personal network, not HR
Successful in rising lower-tier brand margins
Targeting China for high-line sales growth
White; Bruning, Hattich, Jackson, Ryan, & Sovey
 Retail in China (1)
 Prior to 1992, foreign retailers prohibited from joint or
wholly-owned Chinese subsidiaries
 2001 – China joined WTO, retail phased in over 5 years
 Fastest growing luxury market
 High brand awareness, price sensitive, little brand loyalty
 Potential 5M customers w/incomes over $140,000
 22% of global market for luxury goods by 2009
White; Bruning, Hattich, Jackson, Ryan, & Sovey
 Mimi Brewster
 Wealth of knowledge and broad business experience
 Raised in China, spoke Mandarin and local dialect
 UCBerkley, Chinese History major, graduated cum laude
 Stanford MBA
 Eleanor Gaston, two brand re-launch successes
 Seeking general management experience in fast growing
 Internet postings
 Six articles and/or photos, most recent eight years ago
 Leader of WTO protest group – 1999
 Protested outside Chinese consulate re: Chinese journalist
 Using Internet Information in Recruiting Process (2)
 Criminal Record – only if felony or misdemeanor
 May only apply if conviction relates to job duty suitability
 Political activities not grounds for candidate elimination
 Position held in many states
(2) Maynard,
Cooper, & Gale
 Information Reliability Risks (3)
 “Computer Twin” Risk – Mistaken identity attributable to
search inquiry response similarities
(3) The Regents
of the University of California
• Plans to revamp image and product line in United States
• Risk of not meeting consumer demands in the United
• Executive decision may tarnish or destroy China’s
venture and vision for United States
 Virginia - Allowable internet searches
 Mimi –
 Weigh negatives against positives
 Second interview
 Interview more candidate(s)
 Chinese options
 Partnership/Joint Venture
 Foreign subsidiary
 Begin search for another candidate
 Explore local partnership
 If no criminal record charge on Mimi, set up second
 Consider an alternative inside position for Mimi within
the company
BRIC Spotlight (2010, July). Retail sector in china: The next big thing? Retrieved from
Bruning, M., Hattich, K., Jackson, G., Ryan, S., & Sovey, M. (2007). Crouching Cartier, hidden Ferragamo: China as the
east’s lap of luxury brands. Kellogg School of Management. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press.
Coutu, D. (2007, June 1). We googled you. HBR Case Study. Cambridge: Harvard Business Publishing.
Employment Law Tip Sheet (2007, June 20). Googling job applicants – a hiring manager’s dilemma. Retrieved from
Privacy Rights Clearinghouse (1994, December). Fact sheet 16: Employment background checks: A jobseeker’s guide.
Retrieved from
Regents of the University of California (2010, October). UCSB HR: Using internet information in the recruiting process:
Understanding the risks. Retrieved from

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