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a gross sales rep behaving like an ass, boss retains asking for candidates’ age, and extra — Ask a Supervisor


It’s 5 solutions to 5 questions. Right here we go…

1. Do you have to inform your boss when a gross sales rep behaves like an ass?

My different half, Gertrude, lately went on a piece journey to Japan with colleagues. Whereas there, they had been handled to dinner by a rep from one other firm (flown in from the identical metropolis the place Gertrude and her coworkers work) who’s seeking to do enterprise with theirs. She mentioned it was a protracted, uncomfortable meal, with plenty of boasting (innocent sufficient), complaining about complete teams of individuals by ethnicity (!!), and speaking trash about politicians (to individuals who clearly supported the get together he was trashing). He additionally handled the waitstaff terribly. His partner had come alongside, too, and performed themselves a lot the identical. (Undoubtedly not nice for perceptions of People visiting overseas!)

Gertrude is questioning what to do with this information. Suck it up as a foul dinner, or report it to her managers as a part of her learnings on this journey? Neither she nor anybody on the workplace must work with him, as he’s a rep and never a direct worker. He has additionally been related to the corporate he represents for a really very long time, so presumably they know him properly sufficient. Is that this a dealbreaker? Is that this all a part of the schmoozefest that’s networking? She is uncertain learn how to strategy this with the higher-ups in her firm, and her colleagues are additionally on the fence.

How does one navigate these points whereas each making an attempt to do good enterprise (as a result of their challenge is necessary and might have optimistic results on the group at giant) and calling out problematic folks/concepts?

No, this isn’t a part of the schmoozefest that’s networking! That is an a-hole being an a-hole. (He’s additionally horrible at networking.)

I’d positive as hell need to know if a rep whose firm I used to be contemplating doing enterprise with behaved like that, and if I had been Gertrude’s supervisor, I’d count on her to inform me … and if she didn’t and we employed this man’s agency after which I came upon about it later, I’d query her judgment in not telling me. It was a enterprise dinner, and that is business-relevant info. She ought to inform her supervisor what occurred — not framed as “clearly we’ll by no means converse to those folks once more” however as “I assumed I ought to share this with you.”

2. My boss retains asking about candidates’ ages

As a recruiter, at any time when I’m discussing a promising candidate with my boss, he at all times asks for his or her age first. He then checks their resume and work expertise.

This rubbed me the mistaken approach from the start, as a result of I really feel like that’s ageist and the factor he must be asking is, “What number of years of related job expertise have they got?” When discussing wage for a candidate, he additionally comes again to age as a substitute of labor expertise (saying issues like, “Properly, he’s already 45, we can not supply him the wage of a junior” even when the individual has the identical degree of expertise as a junior working for us).

I introduced it up a number of days in the past (not phrased in one of the best ways, to be sincere) and he bought very defensive and indignant, saying he solely makes use of age as the primary evaluation to see how mature a candidate is and he feels prefer it serves the identical objective as asking how a lot work expertise they’ve. (He went so far as telling me to go work for a distinct firm that doesn’t ask folks’s ages.) I finally let it go however I nonetheless really feel like he goes about it the mistaken approach. Am I within the mistaken? Or what arguments are there to have him see what he’s doing is ageist? Or ought to I let it go?

No, you’re not within the mistaken; actually, your boss is breaking the regulation. Federal age discrimination regulation (which protects folks aged 40 and up) makes what your boss is doing explicitly unlawful. Legally, you may’t maintain a candidate’s age (if over 40) towards them, which incorporates issues like rejecting a candidate since you assume their age means you may’t afford them.

If something goes to persuade your boss, it will presumably be that he’s exposing your organization to authorized legal responsibility … however provided that he bought indignant whenever you introduced it up and informed you to work some other place in the event you don’t like how he operates, I’m not optimistic that he shall be open to listening to that, and it would simply produce extra blowback on you. For those who needed to attempt once more anyway, you possibly can body it as, “I appeared into this extra and located that we’re risking a lawsuit due to the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which makes it unlawful to contemplate candidates’ ages” … however I’m skeptical that he’ll change.

But in addition, the regulation apart and even ageism apart, it seems like he’s unhealthy at hiring if that is how he assesses folks! Are you actually getting nice mentorship or talent improvement from this man? I’d take this as impetus to consider different jobs.

3. Ought to I not have shared my psychological well being struggles with my managers?

I’m having an argument with my mom about office norms I’d love your tackle. I endure with an nervousness dysfunction that’s been exacerbated these days by a change in treatment and an unbelievably annoying programs migration that’s left all of us fully clueless about learn how to do our jobs.

Within the final week, I shared with my line supervisor and our shared supervisor that I’m struggling. Whereas I’m not asking for particular lodging in the intervening time, I needed them to concentrate on how the elevated work stress and chaos was affecting my well being and the way I used to be engaged on it (largely profiting from the psychological well being providers our office gives) and to organize them for the truth that I’d want a while for appointments/a bit little bit of grace whereas I get again to equilibrium.

I believe this was the fitting factor to do, and the dialog went properly. My mum thinks I’ve killed any likelihood of getting high-profile assignments or promotion sooner or later by giving them a purpose to doubt my capability to manage and that I ought to’ve stored quiet and faked a abdomen bug if I wanted to decelerate. Who’s proper? Is psychological well being consciousness nonetheless so dire within the fashionable office that I’m prone to have broken my status by admitting I endure from a psychological sickness?

I’d like to say your mother is unquestionably mistaken and you might be undoubtedly proper, however in fact it varies by office and by supervisor. There are a lot of managers and workplaces the place what you shared can be completely tremendous and never come again to chunk you in any approach. There are a lot of others the place, sadly, it will. I can’t say which you’re working for — though you in all probability have a greater sense of it than your mother does! However sure, in some workplaces and with some managers, there’s nonetheless a stigma that may result in you being seen as “not in a position to deal with” the stress of a high-profile challenge or promotion, even amongst managers who assume they’re being supportive.

On the whole I don’t suggest sharing psychological well being struggles with managers until you’re asking for a particular lodging — as a result of in any other case there’s a danger that they’ll assume you’re telling them since you need them to do one thing in another way and in the event that they’re not listening to a particular request from you, they might determine on their very own what they assume would assist (and people received’t essentially be belongings you would ever need).

4. How ought to I acknowledge my worker’s enchancment after a severe dialog?

I lately had a “this isn’t okay, what’s occurring?” dialog with my most senior staff member about quite a lot of balls that she was dropping. Since then she has been doing significantly better, so my query is about the place I am going from right here. Clearly as a supervisor I need to encourage my staff members and inform them they’re doing an awesome job if they’re, however I don’t need to come throughout as condescending or like I have to thank folks for doing the naked minimal.

I believe a big purpose why I really feel bizarre about it is because once I was rising up, if my mother requested me to do one thing and I forgot or didn’t do it straight away, once I did do it, she would make a giant manufacturing of sarcastically thanking me and appearing like I had carried out her an enormous favor. So what is an efficient degree of “I see that you simply’re doing this and I admire it”? I really feel pretend and gross being overly effusive however I nonetheless need to acknowledge the progress.

I’ve usually mentioned it this fashion: “Since we talked final month, I’ve seen you actually doing an awesome job with X and Y, and I admire you taking our dialog critically and making adjustments.” You possibly can add, “I believe we’re in a significantly better spot now” or related.

5. Job rejection earlier than interview even began

Yesterday I had an interview for a place that may be a new function/subject however considerably associated to my earlier jobs. Proper earlier than the interview, I bought a separate e-mail from another person on the firm asking me to interview with them too.

I can admit that I didn’t do my greatest on the primary interview. A part of it was that the individual I used to be speaking to was not enthusiastic from the very begin. I sort of feed off vitality and it’s exhausting to be excited when the individual on the opposite finish sounds bored. A part of it was that I wasn’t as ready as I ought to have been.

On the finish of the interview, I requested my questions, and in addition requested the individual I used to be speaking to concerning the e-mail I bought, if it was an error. She mentioned that it was another person within the firm and he or she might schedule me for a while if I needed. I agreed, considering I’d get one other likelihood, and he or she scheduled me for the subsequent morning.

I did a good quantity of prep work for that subsequent one, a few of which I admit ought to have carried out for the primary interview. However I felt rather more assured going into this one.

About quarter-hour earlier than the interview was supposed to begin, I checked my e-mail and noticed that I’d been rejected from the second job (the e-mail was despatched at like 2 am). However the interview hadn’t been cancelled.

I forwarded the rejection e-mail to the folks I used to be alleged to be assembly with, explaining that I wouldn’t be on the interview that was beginning in like 10 minutes and thanking them for his or her time. I haven’t gotten a response again from both of them, which is okay. However now I’m questioning if I ought to have nonetheless tried to attend the interview, or not despatched the e-mail. What say you?

It was affordable to imagine that the interview wasn’t occurring when you noticed you’d been rejected for that job. That mentioned, typically errors occur, and it’s attainable the rejection was supposed for the primary job slightly than the second. So ideally you’ll have confirmed earlier than assuming — like with an e-mail saying, “I acquired a rejection for this function late final evening so I’m assuming that our 10 am interview this morning just isn’t nonetheless on, but when I’m mistaken about that, please let me know.” That approach if the rejection was alleged to be for the primary job, it will clear up what had occurred — whereas the e-mail you despatched might have left your interviewer considering you had been merely canceling.

I don’t assume what you probably did was unreasonable; this could simply be about overlaying all of your bases.

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