People are usually fascinated by an interesting story and some of the more interesting stories come in the form of legal trials and cases where a person who is accused of something turns out to be NOT GUILTY. The story of Erik H. Gordon is that of a high profile investor that consists of precisely this.
Erik H. Gordon, owner of a private equity and venture capital investment known as ErGo Media Capital LLC, was accused of sexual harassment by Lotti Bluemner in a lawsuit filed in February 2014 in the state court in California which also included a claim of wrongful termination. In a counter lawsuit filed in the federal court in New York, Gordon claimed that the case was fabricated to ruin the good name of the company and acquire nominal gain from the matter as well.
The cases were settled, and in a formal statement released by the person making the accusation, the case was “the result of a misunderstanding due to bad advice received from a friend”. As a result, there has been blame attributed to someone in this matter. The question now becomes, what is the fault of the person that was wrongfully accused and had to bear the burden of defending themselves and their organization for all of the time that this litigation has been taking place since 2014?
This case represents some of the serious considerations that come with sexual harassment and the workplace environment. Demonstrated in this case is how simple even a misunderstanding can turn into an extensive problem for an organization - whether or not there is any validity to the claim. In this case, there are no winners since both parties in this case have had to go through a terrible experience in which both of their reputations were on the line and this was not beneficial to any parties.
As a result, if there is a lesson to be learned, it is to be safe and take extra precaution, not just from sexual harassment in the workplace, but from misunderstandings and bad advice from friends as well.