I'm working on delivering a training module on conflicts of interest and professional ethics, and I got asked an interesting question:
Serina is an independent contractor working for both company X and Y. At the start of her employment, X made computer chips and Y made computer power supplies, and did not directly compete. Serina did not feel that there was a conflict and did not disclose to either employer that she was working with the other.
After a few months, Y decides to restructure entirely into a computer chip company. They are keeping this a secret as they re-vamp, and have asked Serina to stay on to help the transition.
Serina clearly has a conflict of interest now. She can't reveal this conflict to all parties, though, since Y wants to keep their new structure a secret. Is Serina's only ethical option to quit working at one of the two companies?