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Can my boss get away with nepotism in pay raises?

Q. My boss has cut back my hours because of budgetary concerns, yet she has "found" the money in her budget to get her two college-age daughters part-time work in our department (human resources), as well as odd jobs in other departments. She also hired friends of hers. I learned that one of her friends got a raise when the rest of us didn't, even though the friend had just started working here. I have always worked very hard, often working through lunch hour without asking for overtime. Lately I've started sending out my resume. Is there anything else I can do?

A. Unfortunately, there is no law prohibiting your boss from offering her children work or paying her children more money than you. I think you have done the right thing by beginning your search for a new position.

Quite frankly, an organization doesn't show very good judgment when it permits an HR director to hire her daughters to work in the same department she is heading. It also suggests to me that the organization has a culture that rewards people not for what they know, but rather for whom they know.

I hope you manage to find an organization that will reward you for your hard work. There are good companies out there - you just have to be patient.

Good luck.