In the world of business, there are times when a company’s bottom line is sacrificed for the sake of immediate profits.
There are some executives who prioritize sales above everything else, believing that profits will skyrocket if they sign on more and more clients. They entice their salespeople with large bonuses for signing up new clients, regardless of the cost, and without bothering to ensure that the contracts will actually be profitable in the long run. Unfortunately, this can cause major headaches for the customer service team who must struggle to maintain the service standards for a contract that was never viable in the first place. This was the case with a company where an employee’s financial viability warning was ignored by their boss, leading to millions of dollars in losses. Scroll down for the complete story.
OP works with a federal contractor responsible for purchasing and reviewing contracts for government organizations ranging from $5k to $40M.
OP’s company underwent a reorganization resulting in the firing of 30 people from their team of 50, leaving 20 people to do the work for the same salary without work hour pay or sales bonuses, while they strive to retain government customers against big companies like Amazon.
OP is meticulous in reviewing contracts, even for small amounts, but struggled with work volume after 30 people were laid off, causing contracts to pile up; while the sales director disliked OP’s thoroughness and honesty with government customers who were mostly repeat customers for over a decade.
OP opposed the sales team’s attempt to sell outdated and expensive laptops to a school district and instead recommended cheaper and more future-proof Chromebooks, ultimately saving the customer money and winning a 5-year contract.
OP was reprimanded by the sales director for working slowly on small contracts and was criticized by the manager for not following the sales director’s orders. The manager then insulted OP’s intelligence and experience:
OP asked the sales director to provide suggestions to improve work but received a rude email telling him not to review contracts under $100k and to trust the sales team’s due diligence, to which OP responded by copying the manager and requesting confirmation:
OP cleared the backlog by spending only 10 minutes on small contracts, but when a contract worth 10K with potential to become a $100M came through with compliance issues, he followed the sales director’s instruction:
The same state government customer wanted at least the same terms or better terms for a new $50M contract. The sales director promised the same terms and everyone worked on just one contract for three months.
The finance team found out that the company is going to lose $8M. The CEO called a meeting to find a scapegoat for the issue.
OP was blamed and fired by the sales director for the loss incurred due to the 30% rebate clause, despite having 100% customer satisfaction in the job.
OP calmly displayed the Sales Director’s email on 3 big TV screens, which showed the sales director’s mistake of ignoring the warning regarding potential liability to the company, causing him to lose it and make racist tirades against their IT consultants.
OP’s company realized the importance of thoroughly reviewing contracts, leading them to hire more employees and avoid big losses, while the sales director had to pay back his previous bonus and was ultimately fired.
The former sales director sued the company for wrongful termination but lost the case and now owes the company another $200k in legal fees, bringing his total debt to over half a million dollars.
OP explains why he chose to stay in his job despite the lower pay:
OP convinced the CEO to offer free 60-day trials of expensive hardware during COVID-19 pandemic to government customers, which led to paid contracts and established the company as a partner with the government.
OP helped government entities in New York and Florida during the 1st wave of COVID by offering free 60 day trials of expensive hardware:
OP recalls a story during the Covid-19 pandemic when the sales team increased a telecom contract with a state government from $60K to $300K per month, which made the sales leaders hate him even more.
OP objected to the sales team’s plan to increase a state government’s telecom bill from $60K to $300K a month during COVID, suggesting a $100K increase instead but was told to stay quiet and the sales team proceeded with the $300K contract.
OP accidentally vented his frustration about the sales team during a Zoom call and didn’t realize the call was still going on, which offended the sales team.
“Society depends on people like you doing the right thing”
We can’t begin to imagine what kind of bosses would they end up being:
OP clarifies how the bonus works in his company:
It is essential for companies to prioritize the long-term financial viability of their contracts over short-term gains. Ignoring the advice of financial viability workers can lead to disastrous consequences, as seen in the story we’ve shared. We hope this cautionary tale serves as a reminder to employers to listen to their employees and make informed decisions for the benefit of the company in the long run. Have you ever had to deal with a similar situation at work? Share your experience in the comments below.
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“You may ask Doom one question”