sales commision

Posted: August 11, 2012
By: Clay Cerny

One of my clients has been a sales representative with the same company for more than ten years.  He wants to leave his job because his boss is not treating him fairly.  That might sound like whining until you hear, as Paul Harvey would say, the rest of the story.

Over the last ten years, my client has built a strong book of business with several long term accounts.  40% of his book was given to a new sales representative, the company owner’s son-in-law.  While my client is confident that he can find new customers, there is no way his sales total for this year will equal last year, which means he will be taking a pay cut to give a family member a head start in his career.

Is this fair?  Of course not.  However, fair or unfair doesn’t matter.  A business owner in a privately run, non-union company can pretty much make up the rules.  A working person’s only option is to be ready to look for a new job.  It’s not easy to make a change, but it’s harder to lose self-respect – and income.