Is This the Right Time to Come Out?
In this fictional case study, Adam Lawson is a promising young associate at Kirkham McDowell Securities, a St. Louis underwriting and financial advisory firm. Recently, Adam helped to bring in an extremely lucrative deal, and soon he and a few other associates will be honored for their efforts at the firm's silver anniversary dinner. George Campbell, vice president in mergers and acquisitions, is caught unprepared when Adam tells him that, after serious reflection, he has decided to bring his partner, Robert Collins, to the banquet. George is one of Adam's biggest supporters at the firm, and he personally has no problem with Adam being gay. But it is one thing for Adam to come out of the closet at the office. It is quite another to do so at a public company-client event. George is concerned with how Adam's decision will play with the firm's more conservative clients and senior management. Adam has not come to George for permission to bring Robert to the dinner. But clearly Adam wants some sort of response. Six experts comment on George's dilemma and discuss issues of diversity in the workplace.