He’s Great at Sales, Lousy With People

Another update from the Jungle…
image002Helen handles HR issues for her company. She has an open door policy to encourage employees to talk to her because it’s a great way to take the pulse of the workforce. If bad (or she can only hope, good) things are happening, she’ll hear about it before it first.

For several months now, she’s been hearing disturbing news through the grapevine about Sam. He’s the leading salesman for the company and he won last year’s salesman of the year award. The company owners and his immediate supervisor love him because he’s boosted company sales noticeably. But his co-workers hate Sam.

Sam talks loud, usually over the conversation of others, because he always wants to be the center of attention. He is rude to lower level co-workers unless he wants their help; although he never acknowledges their help when praise is handed out. His comments to female co-workers are often outrageous but can’t really be labeled sexist since his comments to male co-workers are often outrageous, too. There’s a rumor going round that some of the women are pricing deadly weapons and bidding on the chance to administer the attitude adjustment to Sam.

In short, Sam is great at his job but the collateral damage he causes to office morale makes Helen wonder if he’s really worth the hoopla. Yesterday, Sam yelled at the sales department’s administrative assistant who then hid in the bathroom to cry. This morning, before Helen finished her first cup of coffee, the admin assistant’s in her office complaining about Sam.

What are Helen’s options?

  1. She can meet with Sam to explain (again) that the company has a no-bullying policy and won’t tolerate his behavior. Since that hasn’t worked before, she’s mentally reserving the right to join the women’s bidding pool on the attitude adjustment.
  2. She can ask Sam’s supervisor to join her and Sam for the meeting to discuss the progressive disciplinary action that needs to be taken.
  3. She can research the cost of hiring an executive coach who can help Sam learn to play well with others and then submit the proposal to the owners and Sam’s supervisor for approval.

If your company is struggling with HR issues, Corporate Compliance Risk Advisor can help you create HR policies that are appropriate for your company’s size and then serve as a resource to your staff as the policies are implemented.

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