I have a somewhat new direct on my team. She transferred from another department. We are a specialty retail store and our sales associates work on commission.  Prior to her our department was on even keel with everyone looking out for one another, saving sales on returns etc...However, this employee does not, or so I'm told by the other team members. When I approach her regarding an issue she flat out denies it. Other than me standing right there when these incidents occur, I can never be 100% that she is lying. She is our number one seller but her lack of a solid customer base doesn't support the numbers.  My team members are about ready to quit because they want something done. I'm afraid to come right out and say to her face that I know she's lying. How do I handle this? I feel like she's laughing herself to the bank and knows that she's pulling the wool over my eyes. Is there any way to handle this and yet still be a professional?

Camby's picture

yea, more details would be good about how this job actually works

you can simply tell her, i'd like you to follow X Y and Z protocol b/c when you do that it will ensure that we have more trust in your work.

richroth's picture

 I see several options here:


1) do nothing and watch it continue to be a problem

2) Talk to the whole staff about ensuring your reporting of sales is accurate as it is the right thing to do, the company needs it, your co-workers depend on each of being truthful, and your job depends on it.

3) Find a way to require data verifying actual sales.  With more details on how the process works I may have a suggestion, if you want it.

4) Form a closer relationship with both the person in question and your other folks to both minimize the growth of this issue and for all the positive reasons Mark and Mike profess.

5) Consistently talk to folks about the importance of accurately reporting sales

6) Stay as positive as possible












smuench's picture
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 It sounds like this employee is stealing commissions from the other sales associates. That makes more sense to me from the description than the 'fake sales' interpretation of others, just because it seems like it should be difficult to fake sales. Also, that is a better explanation for why the other associates are so upset.

So, what to do about it? In one of the casts on feedback, Mark talks about giving feedback even for actions you haven't seen. For example, an event that someone relates to you. The guidance was to give feedback AS IF you had observed the action yourself. And then if the direct pushes back, to tell the direct something like 'It doesn't matter if I saw it, what matters is that I believe it happened. so how are you going to do that differently in the future?"

I've found this guidance to work very well myself.

One last comment: if this employee is stealing commissions, that's breaking down the team and probably warrants being even firmer than MT feedback i.e. "change now or you are done here".


Muffy432002's picture

 Smuench: you nailed it!  I did talk to her today and basically said I was tired of all the complaints and it boiled down to HER changing her behavior. I basically ended the conversation that if I get another complaint she would officially be written up. Of course, she got defensive and said that people were out to get her! Yea, right!