Viewing 30 posts - 1 through 30 (of 30 total)
  • Advise RE Letter from Company CEO RE Piss Poor Personal Performance
  • nwill1
    Free Member

    To keep it short, our company is not performing well as a whole (about 800-900 staff)…my performance has been below expected levels (as has many of the sales team). My results do not purely reflect the work of myself but actually a team of people.

    So anyway I get a letter from the CEO indicating his “bitter disappointment” at my personal performance.

    Do I

    A) take it on the chin and crack on

    B) Respond with a personal professionally crafted email explaining the situation and pointing out all the ways in which I have not been provided with the tools/ingredients to do the job

    I’m normally one to be straight and tell folk as they are but interested in the thoughts of others. I’ve started to draft an email but feels like a bit of a slating of how the company are operating!

    Free Member

    My results do not purely reflect the work of myself but actually a team of people.

    Do I

    What can you do?
    How about C
    Take some initiative, get the sales team together and work out how you all can turn things around. IF your perfomance is being dragged down by other people then nothing you do apart from changing the metrics or being seen as the one who makes excuses and blames others there is nothing you as an individual can do.
    There is no I in team 😉

    Free Member

    Are there outliers in the team who are delivering against target? If so what are they doing thats different?
    If not is whats being asked feasible?

    Free Member

    Maybe your company makes a crap product no ones wants to buy?

    If the whole company is under-performing, it sounds like you need a new CEO…?

    Free Member

    Change name and job title to CEOs, then return using your bosses email.

    Full Member

    D. Ask to meet and understand the problem and why a manager, assuming you have someone between you and the ceo, hasn’t flagged something already…

    Full Member

    I would treat the letter as a possible prelude to restructure and people being put at risk, so I think the letter definitely should be responded to, but in a positive way – i.e. what market/team challenges have contributed to the poor performance and what strategy you are implementing to overcome it.

    I might also be tempted to take a subtle dig at the slimy way the CEO is conducting business, pretty silly sending that kind of letter rather than just having frank objective discussions at management meetings or 1-2-1 – however, any kind of defensive attitude probably not going to help your cause.

    Full Member

    Interesting re twistys comment, September at risk announcement, 3 months consultation, December redundancies, April new start for the financial year…

    Full Member

    Interesting re twistys comment, September at risk announcement, 3 months consultation, December redundancies, April new start for the financial year…

    Yeah, to elaborate i’d make sure there are so many plus points in the response that it outweighs any negative inference from the CEO’s letter if it is pulled out in an assessment interview.

    I do hate BS point scoring, I’d rather just concentrate on running the team and doing a good job, but sometimes the game has to be played…

    Full Member

    Is he disappointed by your performance or your results?

    How you react might be a career-defining moment. He wants to hear that you have the capacity to improve. You should convince him that you do and you will.

    But you need to know that you have his support for any changes that might be necessary.

    Full Member

    C) think **** him and spend more time on the internet at your desk and more time in the toilet on your phone all while getting paid. Do less work than before.

    Free Member

    Success needs no excuses.

    I’d do C

    Sort out a better performance

    Free Member

    Is he disappointed by your performance or your results?[/I]

    Or by THE results?

    tbh you should really know whether it’s you, your team or the product/market – this should form the basis of your response (which maybe as simple as an email or as complex as a restructure of the entire business).

    Or could just be YOU looking for another job, either because you can’t do this one or that you don’t want to be the last person looking for another job 🙂

    Free Member

    It may be he thinks you have the capacity to improve both your performance and that of the team and he’s writing to express that. That said, a letter usually sounds like HR arse covering to me as it’s easier to “performance manage” people out of a job with lots of documentary evidence.

    As others have said, definitely respond but make sure to explain what you’re doing to fix things even if only for yourself. Don’t get chippy, get busy.

    Free Member

    Firstly, the CEO sounds close to breaking point – there is never an excuse for emotional language in business communications. The fact he is using phrases like “bitterly disappointed” tells me lots, this isn’t someone coping with pressure and steering the ship.

    I’d be responding in an unemotional and entirely factual manner with the following:

    – fact driven market overview
    – 4/5 bullet points of key organisational improvements (NOT moans – things that need to, and can be, fixed)
    – a 100 day plan to make improvements for the tram
    – a list of requirements/resources to achieve this

    Been there, done that – worked for a struggling CEO myself a few years back and that’s how I turned it – but, and this is a big but, a failing CEO (and this one is failing) will always eventually steer the ship onto rocks.

    Start looking now for a new role, keep records, copy your CRM records etc assuming you’re in sales management.

    Good luck!

    Full Member

    Write back thanking him for taking the time to write; own the issue by stating that you too are disappointed by the results, but then take the opportunity to outline your plan for your team that would address the issue and turn it around.

    Finish by requesting to meet face to face with him to discuss how you can make the necessary changes with his support.

    If it’s a badly written mail from him then gives him a chance to ‘apologise’ face to face for it and move on; if it’s a prelude to a sacking then you’ve already started to address a development plan that’ll make it that bit harder or more likely that you can get a compromise agreement rather than a non-performance dismissal (“I have identified an action plan but it’s clear you want me out…..”)

    Full Member

    Would probably do as andyrm suggests but send to my direct line manager whilst cc’ing the ceo.

    Free Member

    There is no I in team

    Yes there is. It’s hidden in the “A-Hole”

    Free Member

    Hi all, would like to say thank you for all of the comments and advice.

    I very rarely get any type of anxiety but woke up at 2:00 am and felt I needed to write an email and get my thoughts down on paper/screen whilst they were running through my mind.

    This post was created as a sanity check that what I was doing was the right thing and many of you have re-enforced that providing that the email focuses on the right area and is written in a positive and appropriate/professional manor that it is the right thing to do.

    I don’t want to go into too much detail but the company was a former not for profit organisation and we moved into private ownership just over 12 months ago, is our product strong…given the nature of what we do I’d say no it’s more about corporate and social responsibilities and when companies are running tight budgets on the coal face its lower on their agenda he sees the challenging market. There have also been competitors in the market withdraw from the contract that we deliver due to the challenges.

    I will re-read my email this morning and amend as appropriate, ensuring all facts are outlined and a plan is to be put into place upon my return from annual leave.I also have a list of ‘tools’ promised by the company two years September that have not materialised.

    Some very interesting points above also about potential restructure…I certainly think this is on the cards, they’ve already announced an amalgamation of HR/IT etc which will lead to redundancies, and having been through it twice before I can see the signs.

    As for the comments RE a struggling CEO I see that as the case, it’s interesting that from the small amount of detail in the original post this has been picked up. Unfortunately for him he has been stiched up like a kipper IMO handed the reigns of the company as we approach challenging times.

    Thanks again, I will be working through the thread cherry picking what I see as the most appropriate advice and implementing it appropriately.


    Full Member

    copy your CRM records

    Be aware that this is probably an instant sacking offence. No passing GO, no collecting redundancy money. Have worked with guys who have saved a company a fortune in redundancy by doing similar things.

    Free Member

    Cheers, no there is no intention or need for copying CRM, our buiness is not overly complex I know the company names and contacts and have relationships with those companies. Likelyhood is if/when I change jobs I’ll look to change sector anyway, I’ve been left with a bitter taste, if it were not for my favourable terms I would be out of there already!

    Free Member

    Given what you have just said, a polite, but to the point response covering what others have suggested makes sense.

    I would probably firing a few shots back though, but that’s me.

    And planning an exit strategy.

    Free Member

    1. Be polite
    2. Be constructive
    3. Avoid detailed responses/snide digs/pettiness etc

    Not taking sides but as a CEO dealing with poor performance is a mighty PITA. Gone are the days for simple, direct and open criticism given and taken. Replaced by legal and HR hurdles, formal documentation and the dreaded performance management charade.

    If its the end, always remember that it is NEVER worth burning bridges however bad you feel.

    Free Member

    Option E:

    – confirm with the CEO what problem needs to be solved i.e. if it’s performance, how big is the gap? Is there anything else that requires improvement? Invite the CEO to meet with you an the team later (see below)
    – get Voice of the Customer / insight into why customer behaviour has changed (if relevant) and get them to articulate what they value most… do your products / services no longer fully meet their needs / what are the unmet needs? If necessary encourage your CEO to meet existing customers and those that you’ve lost business with to hear directly what value they attach to your products / services.
    – get the team together to root cause on the root causes of the above and then work on solutions. If customer behaviour has changed also look at competitors and the value they offer in the eyes of customers.
    – work through what help is required to implement the solutions (could be resource, investment, training, removing “blockers” in the org structure – or a multitude of other things)
    – Ask the CEO to attend a meeting to discuss the root causes you’ve identified and the ideas for improvement. Then ask him if he will assist you in fixing the problem via support for the help you need.

    Full Member

    Good advice above about how to structure an answer. Short, to the point, look at each issue raised and give solutions to the issues.

    However this seems to me like a prelude to restructuring / downsizing / sackings.

    so join a union, prepare for your exit.

    Free Member

    From another perspective, have had a couple of occasions where either myself or the team has been laid into by the top while the project manager(s) got off scot-free, but planning, resources and support wasn’t there, management was poor.

    Did the point by point response as to why things were shit. Think it surprised them so got some recognition, but ultimately it signed my exit come redundancies. Though that was okay as it was exactly what I wanted.

    When I went contracting, the team got it for someone else’s failure and ridiculous expectations from a new boss who had it in for us. As contractors, “yeah whatever, we don’t need this shit” and out the door we go to the next job while they try to pick up the pieces.

    Full Member

    Sounds like a shit CEO scapegoating some else for his failings.

    If he really was in charge, he’d have known that things were going badly and done something about it long ago.

    The fact he has sent out de motivational emails tells you he is a complete tosser and more importantly has no idea how to run a company.

    Full Member

    There’s the quote:

    People don’t leave bad jobs, they leave bad managers

    The letter from the CEO is pretty poor form. The company is failing, the infighting and blame game has started. Consider what options you have outside of the company, life’s too short….

    Free Member

    I would refer to some of the comments in an earlier thread about practical jokes at work.

    Free Member

    Coffee’s for closers

Viewing 30 posts - 1 through 30 (of 30 total)

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