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View Full Version : Should I have helped or kept my mouth shut?


soggyramen
08-25-2007, 07:29 PM
Ok I have a situation that's been bothering me for the past week. When I was working at my local tennis club I had 3 customers come in (family) and the son wanted a new racquet and wanted one of the babolat's but could not decide. the boy had used a prince shark before and told me he wanted something with more power, comfort, and less feel because he didn't like string feedback and that he was a pure baseliner and hated the net. i told him that i thought the pure drive cortex or the aero pro drive cortex would have been good for him and since the weight was around the shark's ballpark i knew it'd be easy for him to pick up and play with. BUT THEN IN COMES MY BOSS!!!!

My boss came in during the sale and once he realized that these people wanted to buy their son a racquet he immediatly showed them the Aero Blast. Now that may not seem like a big deal but we have a ton at the shop we haven't sold and he's been complaining that they're still here but he resorts to flat out lying to the boy to try to get him to buy it. The kid and parents were so naive that they bought 3 for their son. He told him that an OS gives more control than a mid or midplus. The OS racquets had more power but it was easily controlled than a mid plus. he lied saying that's his racquet of choice (uses pure control). to top it all off he lied saying it was my racquet of choice as well. I wanted to say something so bad as everyone who's come to me for racquet advice at my job has said such good things about me and I felt so bad letting that go. I know there's a possiblity that he'll like it but it's the principle that counts. The week before that a kid's grip ripped and he got mad because I gave him a grip of mine instead of letting him buy one. At this point i'm fed up, I have all the skill neccessary to work at any shop i want where i live but what do you think i should do if this happens again?

He's also done this 3 times before when i was off...our records showed that he sold an aero storm to a 9 year old girl that came with her parents. 4 of those nanocarbon oversize racquets to an old man who said he wanted low stiffness. last he sold nsix-one tour 90 to a beginner which that was his first racquet.

it just doesn't seem right. I'd rather sell ok and be honest and have people come back than lie and have good sales.

VikingSamurai
08-25-2007, 07:32 PM
How old are you, how old is he. What is your position compared to what is his position?..Who owns the place?

soggyramen
08-25-2007, 07:35 PM
i'm 19 my brother who's on here more than me is 16 and we both work there. i help out with the racquet selections and everything else in the shop except stringing. my boss trains the kids only. my boss owns the place as well.

bossass
08-25-2007, 07:40 PM
You boss sounds like a tool.

You're in a difficult situation. If you say something you could risk your job, or risk a good reference from your boss if you ever leave. But on the other hand he's undermining you and how you see your responsibilities to YOUR customers.

It'd be one thing if he was selling inappropriate racket to customers on his own, but now he's cutting into your sale and making you look inexperienced while at the same time selling products not because it's what a customer would do well with, but based on what you have alot of to move. If you think you can call him on it and not **** him off, then I'd do it. At least tell him not to butt into your sales and undermine you. If he's not an *** he'll respect you, and if he is, well, it might be time to look for a new shop.

This might actually be a good opportunity for you move on. Go talk to the manager/owner at another shop and tell them the shop you currently work at has shady selling practices that make you uncomfortable, and all you want to do is give great customer service and match people with the equipment that will allow them to get the most out of their game and have the most fun. A good shop would really respect a mindset like that and offer you a position, or at least think of you when they have a position open up.

VikingSamurai
08-25-2007, 07:41 PM
Oh, so the guy you have the problem with is the boss?

From what I read, you have a pretty good head on your shoulders, so if it were a stuation by there was an owner and this guy was just a workmate or manager, then I would have suggested you sat down calmly with the owner and discussed it. The fact that this guy is the owner would suggest that you wont have that opportunity..

Also, you have to understand that business is business, and usually when people who are dishonest normally dont get far in life. His store might be doing ok, but if that isnt the kind of environment that you feel you should work in, then that is a choice you have to make. Also, if you have gained a reputation as a great helper and sell to people what they need rather than what they want. Then believe me, that will stay in the mind of a customer alot longer, and so if you ever went to a different store, then you can be sure your customers will follow you..Sometimes the best talking anyone can do, is with their feet..

By the sounds of it, you have a good life ethic, and even at 19, you are not too young to look at starting a business of your own. It sounds like you have the right head on your shoulders!.

PS:.. Never, and I repeat, never talk about or complain about a former job or employer to a future employer.. Worst thing you could ever do!...

Chris

iplaybetter
08-25-2007, 07:45 PM
tell them to try them and then make the sale of the one that is right

soggyramen
08-25-2007, 07:48 PM
Oh, so the guy you have the problem with is the boss?

From what I read, you have a pretty good head on your shoulders, so if it were a stuation by there was an owner and this guy was just a workmate or manager, then I would have suggested you sat down calmly with the owner and discussed it. The fact that this guy is the owner would suggest that you wont have that opportunity..

Also, you have to understand that business is business, and usually when people who are dishonest normally dont get far in life. His store might be doing ok, but if that isnt the kind of environment that you feel you should work in, then that is a choice you have to make. Also, if you have gained a reputation as a great helper and sell to people what they need rather than what they want. Then believe me, that will stay in the mind of a customer alot longer, and so if you ever went to a different store, then you can be sure your customers will follow you..Sometimes the best talking anyone can do, is with their feet..

By the sounds of it, you have a good life ethic, and even at 19, you are not too young to look at starting a business of your own. It sounds like you have the right head on your shoulders!.

PS:.. Never, and I repeat, never talk about or complain about a former job or employer to a future employer.. Worst thing you could ever do!...

Chris

Well it's what I intend to do when I start college going to pursue professional tennis management to get my own shop. Now that I think about it some of the people that come see me go to other clubs where the same equipment is readily available both clubs are underexperianced in the proshop as they only have a stringer and someone who pretty much takes the money. i think if i go to one of those clubs to work they'll eventually catch on.

soggyramen
08-25-2007, 07:49 PM
tell them to try them and then make the sale of the one that is right

that would have been easy but my boss interfered when i was regripping the demos of the APD and the PD

BreakPoint
08-25-2007, 08:03 PM
I guess your shop doesn't offer demos? It's hard to imagine people buying 3 or 4 racquets of the same model without at least trying them first.

I guess your boss figures that if he sells them the wrong racquet, they'll be back soon enough to buy another 3 or 4 racquets of another model? Making money from a pro shop is tough and it sounds like your boss is in a tough situation as the owner with all that unsold inventory. Not to excuse his behavior but I'm sure he probably justifies his actions by thinking that he's just trying to find a way to stay in business.

VikingSamurai
08-25-2007, 08:08 PM
I guess your shop doesn't offer demos? It's hard to imagine people buying 3 or 4 racquets of the same model without at least trying them first.

I guess your boss figures that if he sells them the wrong racquet, they'll be back soon enough to buy another 3 or 4 racquets of another model? Making money from a pro shop is tough and it sounds like your boss is in a tough situation as the owner with all that unsold inventory. Not to excuse his behavior but I'm sure he probably justifies his actions by thinking that he's just trying to find a way to stay in business.

TW stays in business, and they seem pretty honest to me?

soggyramen
08-25-2007, 08:10 PM
good point

JW10S
08-25-2007, 08:12 PM
TW stays in business, and they seem pretty honest to me?TW is also part of the reason many pro shops are struggling.

tbini87
08-25-2007, 08:13 PM
I guess your shop doesn't offer demos? It's hard to imagine people buying 3 or 4 racquets of the same model without at least trying them first.

I guess your boss figures that if he sells them the wrong racquet, they'll be back soon enough to buy another 3 or 4 racquets of another model? Making money from a pro shop is tough and it sounds like your boss is in a tough situation as the owner with all that unsold inventory. Not to excuse his behavior but I'm sure he probably justifies his actions by thinking that he's just trying to find a way to stay in business.

yeah, it sounds obvious to me that the boss is trying to sell the racquets that are overstocked or aren't selling. but that is no excuse to lie to customers and feed them a ton of bs. now that family thinks an oversize frame gives more control than a mid or mid+? hopefully that family finds out he is full of crap and never gives him business again...

soggyramen
08-25-2007, 08:14 PM
TW is also part of the reason many pro shops are struggling.

trust me we're not struggling it's just we had a bunch of aero blasts and he wanted to get rid of them it seems he wants to make them buy the most expensive racquet possible or just get rid of unwanted inventory

VikingSamurai
08-25-2007, 08:14 PM
yeah, it sounds obvious to me that the boss is trying to sell the racquets that are overstocked or aren't selling. but that is no excuse to lie to customers and feed them a ton of bs. now that family thinks an oversize frame gives more control than a mid or mid+? hopefully that family finds out he is full of crap and never gives him business again...

And so thats why his business is struggling.. Not from anything TW has done!

Chauvalito
08-25-2007, 08:15 PM
Oh, so the guy you have the problem with is the boss?

From what I read, you have a pretty good head on your shoulders, so if it were a stuation by there was an owner and this guy was just a workmate or manager, then I would have suggested you sat down calmly with the owner and discussed it. The fact that this guy is the owner would suggest that you wont have that opportunity..

Also, you have to understand that business is business, and usually when people who are dishonest normally dont get far in life. His store might be doing ok, but if that isnt the kind of environment that you feel you should work in, then that is a choice you have to make. Also, if you have gained a reputation as a great helper and sell to people what they need rather than what they want. Then believe me, that will stay in the mind of a customer alot longer, and so if you ever went to a different store, then you can be sure your customers will follow you..Sometimes the best talking anyone can do, is with their feet..

By the sounds of it, you have a good life ethic, and even at 19, you are not too young to look at starting a business of your own. It sounds like you have the right head on your shoulders!.

PS:.. Never, and I repeat, never talk about or complain about a former job or employer to a future employer.. Worst thing you could ever do!...

Chris

That was well said. I might be willing to place an "anonymous" phone call to this guy...if someone is looking to buy a racket, selling them the correct one for their skill level seems liek the best policy.

If they are happy, they are more likely to come back for upgrades stringing etc.

I bought a racket from an online seller who sent me a demo when I had ordered a normal racket. Furthermore, the racket in the pictures online were not demos. I returned the racket for a normal version and will never buy from them again. I have advised others not to buy from them as well.

bad_call
08-25-2007, 08:21 PM
i had a similar experience at a local shop. the salesman had no clue how i hit nor did he ask and was pushing the slower selling racquets. so i left the shop and began my search using this forum...glad i did. :)

BreakPoint
08-25-2007, 08:22 PM
TW stays in business, and they seem pretty honest to me?
I think TW is a little bigger than this little pro shop.

Slow sales of one racquet is not going to put TW in financial trouble.

Steady Eddy
08-26-2007, 12:08 AM
Unfortunately, my experience in retail stores is that they want you to buy the most expensive item. I recall this happening in a department store when I was just looking at racquets, the salesman said, "...or do you want to move on up to graphite?" (Graphite racquets were new then, he didn't know anything about them other than that they were most expensive.)

I've known people who've gone into sales and they're always being pressured into making sales, not being helpful to customers. I think it's just the nature of the business. As for myself, I ask friends about products I'm interested in. I'm just not interested in getting the advice of the salesman.

I hate to sound cynical, but if you go somewhere else, it will probably be the same thing. The only solution is to have your own place where you treat the customers right.

Automatix
08-26-2007, 01:13 AM
Soggy it's good that you're thinking about it, that means that you are honest and try to help people who's knowledge about racquets is somewhat poor... but I think you should tell them the magic sentence: Try it and then decide...

It's the safest way to go, you aren't telling them that the Aero Blast isn't for their son so your boss shouldn't be too angry... btw it's very common to be full of crap when you want to sell a racquet... ohhh and one more thing if you ever do own your own tennis shop I'm sure that your clients will be very pleased since you're trying to be helpful... ;)

diggler
08-26-2007, 02:26 AM
Your boss is a ********. Look for another job. When you find a new job, tell everyone you can of his shonky practices, particularly the people he sold inappropriate rackets to.

Hot Sauce
08-26-2007, 03:02 AM
Very difficult decision. I think you have to decided whether you want to continue working under a boss like that. In the end, you're going have to pick your job, or your morals and ethics. And that's something none of us here can decide for you.

dave333
08-26-2007, 05:55 AM
lol damn those parents have a ton of money to burn...my parents would never buy me three racquets as expensive as the aero blast at once. I didn't even get 2 m-fil 300s at once.

goober
08-26-2007, 11:09 AM
Eventually this type of behavior exhibited by your boss will come to bite him in the rear. There was a local pro shop that did the same type of bs stuff around here. A lot of the local players who were knowledgable started talking about it. Word got around to the tennis community and the pro shop closed in a couple years.

Since he is your boss I would not say anything. Try to leave on good terms and wait to pick your fights when you are in a position to do so.

koopa_troopa
08-26-2007, 11:50 AM
I don't think you should feel guilty at all. If you had said something, you could have gotten you and your brother fired. To be honest, these customers are to blame as well. I never walk into a store and believe everyword a salesman makes. I know they are trying to sell me a product, and usually the most expensive. They do not care at all about informing, just selling. This is not only in tennis stores. If this family was willing to buy three racquets on the recommendation of a store owner, then it is partially their fault. And tennis racquets are all about BS anyways. All the technology, its all baloney. Racquet companies make up stuff all the time. So the tennis racquet business is already a joke. I'm not saying this is good in any way, lieing is just part of the business. Don't feel bad, the fact that you were disturbed by this shows you have some integrity.

LuckyR
08-26-2007, 11:59 AM
A couple of things. The boss's actions were typical business as usual (since he is the owner all he cares about is $). However, the moment he lied about your preference of racquet, he crossed the line from ethically challenged money-hungry businessman to unethical shyster. Now he is corrupting your good name, which in business is extremely valuable (especially in the service industry).

If you have the opportunity to more to another store/shop I would do so. If you don't, and this is just a fill-in job before you start school or something, you could tell him off (for your personal satisfaction) or not, stick it out, collect your paycheck and chalk it up to tuition at the school-of-hard-knocks. On the other hand, if you can't move to another shop because of convenience and this is how you are going to make you living for some time, then you are in a quandry, balancing your paycheck with your good name. My guess is the guy is very insecure and will not deal well with perceived criticism, should you seek to speak to him about it.

Good luck.

quest01
08-27-2007, 05:04 PM
Wow your boss sold a Wilson nsix one 90 tour to a beginner.

VikingSamurai
08-27-2007, 05:10 PM
Eventually this type of behavior exhibited by your boss will come to bite him in the rear. There was a local pro shop that did the same type of bs stuff around here. A lot of the local players who were knowledgable started talking about it. Word got around to the tennis community and the pro shop closed in a couple years.

Since he is your boss I would not say anything. Try to leave on good terms and wait to pick your fights when you are in a position to do so.

Well said.. You might not like the way he has behaved, but you also have a future..No point making it harder than it already is..