A 28-year veteran of Diamond Housewares, Dan Ricker’s sales have faltered in the past two years. Ricker has been a top producer for the company, very loyal, and has forged many key relationships with customers over the years, most notably J.C. Penney. Dan works by himself out of the Dallas Trade Mart. Ricker has encountered a variety of family problems and personal health problems over the past year. Dave Mitchell, the sales manager, believes that Dan will work his problems out and get back on track. Kurt Diamond, the CEO, disagrees and wants Mitchell to take more drastic action.
Students need to assess what actually precipitated Kurt Diamond’s sudden interest in Dan. Kurt and Dan have never gotten along well, and Dan’s refusal to accept the sales management job in 1980 didn’t help their rocky relationship. From a sales management standpoint, Kurt Diamond is not an enjoyable person to work for. Ricker may have turned down the sales manager position in 1980 not because of the money or the relocation to Chicago, but rather because he didn’t want to deal with Kurt Diamond. Perhaps Kurt is keeping a more watchful eye on the sales force (or at least on Ricker) than Mitchell thinks, and has been waiting for Dan to have a slump in order to nail him.
Question 1: What should Dave Mitchell do about Dan Ricker?
Question 2: Pretend you’re Dan Ricker. What would you do in response to what you recommended in the first question?
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