It was June 1988, six months into my new role as VP of Sales.
While some new hires excelled beyond expectations, one team member, Scott, barely met the minimum standards. His performance metrics were puzzling – sales were increasing slightly, but client counts were not. Even more perplexing was his increasing commission earnings.
Upon closer inspection, I discovered that Scott had been manipulating sales numbers. He was taking calls for absent colleagues, making sales, and altering the sales figures to claim credit and commission. The issue lay in an override at the invoice level, which went unnoticed until I manually calculated his client activity.
After addressing the technology problem with the IT team, I spoke candidly with Scott. I showed him what he was doing, and his face turned bright red. I was tempted to terminate his employment on the spot, but he asked for a chance to make amends. After consideration, I granted him that opportunity.
Fast forward to last week when this story repeated itself. Jennifer shared that she had a similar issue within her team. Kayleigh was tampering with performance metrics, much like Scott had done. Jennifer wanted to terminate her immediately, but we decided to set a milestone for Jennifer, an experienced new hire and a future employee, achieving a production benchmark.
Trust was broken. Scott lost mine, and Kayleigh lost Jennifer’s. It would have been easy and convenient to terminate Scott and Kayleigh on the spot. But it would have created further problems for our clients and our teams.
Today’s story is about reacting when it has the least impact on your business.
If you have a situation with an underperforming employee or someone like Kayleigh and want to discuss it, please reply to this email. I have set aside three thirty-minute complimentary coaching sessions over the next week. No sales pitch, no strings attached.
Thanks for reading.
Dedicated to your success,