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Hi guys, i'll cut straight to the chase. I was recently applied for a Sales Executive role, however due to my experience and skill base, this job was not suitable for me and the company "created" another role; Business Development Executive.

 

I have been employed for 2 months now and done alot within my first 2 months, such as help creating a new website, positioning brand, improving brand awareness etc. All good, however I suggested that we should begin setting targets to help increase our market share. This is fine, Boss asks me to draw a report together indicating our current sales and where we can go from here.

 

The sales indicates that in the area he wants me to focus, they are only £48k 2013-14. So I suggested an increase of 25% due to my efforts and another 5% increase due to probable market dynamics. However boss basically wants me to make 10k a month or 120k in a year on prior sales, which is a 3.5 fold increase. Do you consider this unreasonable because I do, and I fear that although it is possible it is hugely difficult given current share of the market and prior sales. For this reason I fear dismissal as the boss is asking me what sales ive made this week etc hoping that I am going to say its 2.5k this week.

Edited by chriscls
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Depends entirely on what you are selling and where you are! My piece of string is four feet, how long is yours?

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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Selling washroom products.

 

In 2012-13, company made 70.

In 2013-14, company made loss to 48

In 2014-15, company wants to make 160

 

To me this is entirely unreasonable based on past performance.

Edited by chriscls
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mm, not exactly cutting edge, expanding niche market, is it? So no, giant growth is probably not reasonable.

 

problem is, for him to pay your wages, you need to be pulling in profit of at least twice what your salary is. So I see your point, but are you washing your face, so to speak?

 

would a base salary and commission based on sales be an option?

 

I'd remove the numbers and location - they make you too identifiable :)

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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washing your face? Well I have took a 5k reduction on my last salary less commission too in order to take this job, not due to the money but for a diff challenge. Boss did say that he wants to make 3 times what my salary is.

 

The figures sought, are in part achievable but only through a consistent sales growth plan and certainly can not be done at a 10k per month rate. I am good at what I do but to me this is not realistic in the time frame, and I guess I fear that it will provide grounds for dismissing me on capability. This is fine but do you not have to prove that another employee was able to do the same task, perhaps at a relative rate i.e to their salary too?

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Yes, that's right.

 

I think I'd be inclined to prepare a more realistic counter proposal. This boss doesn't sound like they are that good at business :) It needs a proper plan with retention and conversion rates translated into activity levels, etc. So he can see how much effort his sales growth will take, and therefore how many people he'd need. Does he also have someone doing market analysis?

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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As far as I am aware, I am a one man army regarding sales and marketing. He states that certain portions of the business are due to see 20% growth. I am not entirely sure where the data is sourced but we have no one bar myself, assessing these things. I have forecasted conservative growth by 2.5-7.5%, which I think will happen with or without me. However a +300% increase on 2013-14 is bizarre and whilst it is not impossible, it is important to consider the position now and in the past.

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It does sound like he'd need an extra salesperson or two!

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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Just because you don't reach a target, it's not the end of the world. In fact targets can be counter product.

 

The effect's they have on the business, the effect they have on employees, can be demoralizing, the constant feeling that you are failing although you are putting 110% effort in. Targets need to be SMART, specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound.

 

Ask for a meeting, tell him what you are really thinking.

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I enjoy targets, the ones I set were SMART. However I suggested that in order to achieve even my targets, which are modest compared to his, that I require face to face contact. The targets set now I deem as not being SMART, certainly if I am the only one tasked with this.

 

The bottom line is, the boss feels that he should be making 2-3 times my salary, which is somewhat fair, but relativity is a balancing element too. Yes these figures are fine, if indeed they have proven to be achieved or close in the past and I have more than one person assisting me. Neither of these are true, to knowledge and whilst I will try and achieve these, I am a realistic but opportunistic person and I think it is not do-able on current resources and position.

 

If I were to be dimissed on grounds on capability and what I have outlined, do I have a strong position? Everything I know about "reason" suggests these targets are unreasonable. Due to the fact also, that I have received no formal training for this role, due to the fact that it was "created" for me.

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You know in practical terms he could let you go for any non discriminatory reason in the first 2 years?

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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I signed a contract outlining my obligations and his, of which must have some bearing on the law and indeed real life expectations. The law must favor me somehow, I am no expert which is why I am here so any assistance regarding the strength of any dismissal case I have is greatly appreciated.

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Whilst it is true that a contract does have binding obligations on both sides, it is also true that the law provides redress only through an Employment Tribunal for a case of Unfair (or Wrongful) Dismissal and unfortunately you are not permitted to take a case of UD to a Tribunal unless you have two years continuous service - so whilst the dismissal might be unfair in law, you have no redress without the requisite service. The exceptions to the two year rule would be where any dismissal was for a breach of a protected characteristic - for example discrimination on grounds of race, religion, age, disability etc

 

This would leave you solely with the possibility of a breach of contract claim through the County Court system for any damages which may flow from the breach.

 

The employer is therefore on reasonably safe ground and can set unreasonable targets, suddenly dislike your aftershave, the colour of your tie or simply let you go with little fear of any legal comeback. I would certainly be countering the employer's proposal to set out a programme of staggered growth, with an outline resources and forecast budgets to take account of the increased business. An instant increase of this magnitude is unreasonable, certainly, but that wouldn't make any dismissal for failing to reach those targets unlawful.

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Thanks regarding the possibility of a breach of contract claim. Do you think I have a strong case, should this be the resultant action of my failure to achieve these unrealistic targets?

 

Another question I have is this. Does my employer have to pay me for any unused holiday entitlements, should I be dismissed and or a compensation packing, perhaps a weeks wages or something?

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Thanks regarding the possibility of a breach of contract claim. Do you think I have a strong case, should this be the resultant action of my failure to achieve these unrealistic targets?

This would depend entirely on the wording of your contract and to what extent a particular clause may have been breached

 

Another question I have is this. Does my employer have to pay me for any unused holiday entitlements, should I be dismissed and or a compensation packing, perhaps a weeks wages or something?

Unused holiday entitlement - definitely, for anything accrued but not yet taken. For compensation this would merely be notice as provided by contract or statute, whichever is the greater.

 

..

Any advice given is done so on the assumption that recipients will also take professional advice where appropriate.

 

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING

EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

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If I have been helpful in any way - please feel free to click on the STAR to the left!

 

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