One of life's curves

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Chunk-O-Funk, Feb 21, 2006.

  1. The company I work for, a new auto dealership got bought out by the competition today. Although I am not completely without options life seems uncertain probably for the first time since I started working in 1984.

    I wont go into all the details as it could get quite long but I was on a short list of "desirable people" for the new owners to keep. I have a good recommendations from the manufacture and by my boss so there is a job there for me if I take it. But I'm a skeptic, and have seen this before. They have offered me a decent position, but I have a feeling they are after a large number of wholesale customers I have, once they get that things could change for the worse.

    Here is the question I have for you all. What would you do in my position?

    These are my options:

    Go to the new place:
    Upside, still have a job. Pay is the same with a better commission. Same hours. Better benefits.
    Downside, it will be some work setting up the parts location and after that the job is uncertain. A little more travel time.

    Take a layoff.
    Upside, I can collect my two weeks vacation pay and collect unemployment. Taking time off is good ( I think), I haven't had more than two week off in a row since I was 18. Plus I could use the time to learn something new, hopefully better.
    Downside. Not sure how much take home pay this will produce (80% ? of gross) plus paying for health coverage is like $500.00 per month I think. I have a mortgage to pay for.

    I could simply get a job somewhere else and I am working on those options, but the take over is going pretty quick. I will be meeting there human resources department this Thursday and The doors will be shut by the end of the month.

    I would love to hear some opinions. Anyone else go through a similar situation?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Herman


    Dec 25, 2005
    Lynchburg, VA
    I've been through similar situations a few times. How about you play along, go to the new place, and crank up the job search. That way, you've got a job but are looking for something better. If the new place turns out like you fear, hopefully you're long gone before they get the chance to let you go. On the other hand, maybe the new place will work out well and you stay there.

    I've always found it's better to have a job when looking than not. My $.02 - good luck.
  3. Jazzin'

    Jazzin' ...Bluesin' and Funkin'

    Take the new job, you can always quit after that if it isn't for you. But it sounds like it is the same with more $$$mula$$$.
  4. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Lacey, WA
    Take the layoff. If they are going to dump you anyway like you think, do it to them first.

  5. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    Take the job and keep looking. Figure out exactly what unenjoyment is in your state, it's not anywhere near 80% in MA.
  6. Thor

    Thor Moderator Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    I'll vote for staying with the job. That being said, I wouldn't
    do an instant reveal on your customer list. However, the old
    companies records will have records of the sales you made to
    your wholesale customers anyway. So they can get that info if
    they choose to. But getting it and being able to capitalize on
    it are two different things.

    Some of the issues are that the customers can buy from
    anybody, and probably get calls from a lot of different people.
    But YOU have the relationship. If you tell your customers that
    all is cool, they will stay with you. If you choose to move on,
    then you tell them so and be sure that they know how to
    contact you when they are thinking about buys or upgrades or
    new leases.

    Another point to consider is that the heir business is likelier
    to retain the business if you move on right away, as in those
    cases sales guys that think they will retain 80% of the book
    actually only get about 40% transfer, and have to rebuild
    the rest; which takes time, costs money and lost commissions.
    At least it is that way in the food trades.

    I think here the devil you know is better than the one you
    don't. And as pointed out, you will have the luxury of doing
    a job search while still being paid, which gives you options.

    Options change the way you negotiate, as you are working
    from a position of strength, and don't have to take a deal you
    may not like. And you may be able to negotiate a better
    final package as a result.
  7. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    I'm not sure about that. If the final outcome is the same, (Involuntary layoff) CoF would qualify for unemployment either way, unless they ask him to reapply for the new company. If that's the case, then yes, cash in the company time you have now. Otherwise, stay on.

    Good luck.
  8. baba

    baba Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2002
    3rd stone from the sun
    Take the job.

    It sounds like you are in sales. They need salespeople and as long as you can perform they should want to keep you. I've never known of a company letting good sales people go. I speak from going through 4 different mergers/buyouts in my career.
  9. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB

    Jan 28, 2001
    New York
    I'd stick it out but be looking around for something else just in case it doesn't pan out to your liking.

    At least you have a job currently, there are many that don't. I wouldnt make any rash decisions until you see what the new gig is like.
  10. Thanks for the advise!

    I have a new option to add to my table. I have an interview set up tomorrow with a competing dealership and they are very interested in talking to me. It would be the same deal as far as they are new to the manufacture and having an experienced person would be beneficial, plus bringing over X amount of wholesale business. Plus I can also go to him with two other aces up my sleeve.

    I have much more interest in going to work for this dealership than who will be taking us over. There is more than one reason and its actually why I was considering taking a layoff. This company simply does not have a good reputation as an employer. They have help wanted adds in the paper quite often. The place is known as kind of a meat grinder. They are actually open for business from 7:00 am to 12:00 am. Plus, the job they want me to do will be a challenge because they do not have a good reputation among the wholesale clients they want me to bring over.

    Lets put it this way. I was a parts manager of a small mom and pop dealership. They are a big multi-line dealership that has been around for a long time. When they decided to sell the same manufacture we did, I lost very little business to them. I have two trucks on the road delivering parts, they have thirteen. They have everything in place to shut us down but their reputation sucks and wholesalers won't buy from them.

    Basically there are better people to work for. As a large dealership they can offer me some others can't, like profit sharing and so on. Sometimes it's just about the quality of your work environment. I'm still going to go check out their operation tomorrow or Friday just to see if it as bad as their reputation.

    I agree having a job does give you more bargaining power when looking for different employment, so If I don't get what I want with the other dealer I more than likely will go with them and try it out. After all a reputation is mostly hearsay.

    Well, anywho.

    Wish me luck with the interview.
  11. Eric Cioe

    Eric Cioe

    Jun 4, 2001
    Missoula, MT
    I do wish you luck with everything. My dad went through the same thing a while back, and was unemployed for several months. It was weird going over there, looking in the fridge, and nothing to be found. Sounds like you're lots better off, though; good luck!
  12. In 2004 the company my fiancee worked for was running down. When they finally closed out operations here, she had a really hard time finding a job that paid anywhere near what she was making, and she was unemployed for a long time.

    My advice- get all your ducks in a row before making a move.

    Best of luck.
  13. Thor

    Thor Moderator Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Lotsa Luck Chunk!
  14. Maverick Blues

    Maverick Blues Being a Thumper is all about ATTITUDE!

    Apr 28, 2005
    Richmond, VA
    Somewhat, yes. The place I've worked for over a dozen years (with higher profits every year of their existence, by the way), has been bitten by "outsourcing fever" and issued an RFP for anything from replacing some of our hardware to blowing off the entire IT department and letting outsiders do the work.

    They keep having these meetings saying, "We don't know what's going to happen, it may be we just buy the hardware and no one will lose their jobs." But yesterday I attended two classes they set up, entitled "Writing an Effective Resume" and "Acing the Interview" -- to me that's way past "handwriting on the wall." :p

    I'm in your boat of not knowing what to do, plus not knowing what is going to happen or when. But my best bet is that I'll be out of work before the year's out.

    Been trying to think of this as an opportunity rather than a problem and wondering if I could move back into music, which I've always loved. Landing a job designing effects or preamps (for which I have beaucoup background), or learning a little bit about lutherie (for which I have nada) -- if some shop would have me -- would be absolutely awesome.

    But I don't know if it will pay the mortgage, ya know?

    No recommendations for you, Chunk-O-Funk, as I don't know enough about your situation to be helpful. But please know you are not alone... there are plenty of us dealing with this kind of stuff and either trying to figure out what to do or trying to find work.

    Hang in there, and best of luck to ya!

  15. WELP! I am now one of the 46% (?) that make up the Massachusetts unemployed (lived in RI, worked in MA.). Well actually, I haven't filed yet but will on Monday. Yesterday was my last day.

    I wound up not taking the job with the company that bought our franchise. It was obvious that they did not have my future as long term. What I suspected in my original post was partly true. I also found out that me and a few other employees were simply part of the deal when my previous boss sold the franchise. The new owners do lack experienced Mazda employees, but with our franchise gone it doesn't mater that much. My being there would only have helped them be where they want to be a little quicker.

    Here was the deciding factor:

    I had a tour of their facility which was very impressive and talked in detail with the general manager. When it came down to my salary all I got was a song and dance. The original offer they gave me was a 90 day guaranteed salary which would be converted to a salary plus commission. I asked what would it be converted too, they answered. "It will be based on that figure". So, I asked, well.....what will the salary be, and what is the percentage? The answer to that was, "I'll have to ask Bob." (one of the owners). Bob came in, same thing. I got a speech on how if there is a company that I should join it should be them. The best I could get from their dancing is that my salary would be low, and the commission should make up for it. Basically, for what I can help them with, that's a crapy deal. There was also a couple of other things that turned me off. Also, Bob was such the car salesman, and that's how he approached recruiting me. It sounded like he rehearsed his shtick in front of a mirror first. I felt like jumping up and telling him "look,'re not on TV and I'm not buying a car, just come back down to earth with the rest of us and level with me." It would have been a better experience if he never came into the office, but once I found out the G.M. didn't know what my pay plan should have been, I knew It was going to get screwed.

    The other Mazda dealer was simply not ready to move into the wholesale market. They are only a few months old and are not getting enough business coming in their service department yet, plus they really didn't have the space to stock larger body parts. They told me I would be an asset to their company and may be interested in the future. I wasn't all that disappointed as it was a far ride through some nasty traffic. Getting home would be even worse.

    Today was good day though! I had a good interview with a Honda dealer that is looking for something in an assistant managers position. He was impressed with my resume and gave me a good offer. Not as much as I was making but pretty close, plus the position comes with a lot less responsibility.There was also mention of advancement because they have plans to open at least two more dealers. The place felt kind of homey so I hope this one works out. I had another interview that was only looking for an entry level position, but they are opening a new location and wanted to know if they can call on me in about two months.

    I have one more interview lined up, but it's a service\parts position in an upscale used......ahhhem...pre-owned car lot. They are one of my old clients and are good people. Also a far ride through grid lock though.

    Thanks for your story!

    My advise, if there truly is writing on the wall do not wait around to see what happens. I went through this once before and It all worked out for the best. We knew in advance that we would be taken care of. This time was very different. We have heard all kinds of rumors for a long time, then finely it happened. When it does happen, it's quick. You're employer only has him as his best interest and you may be left in the cold. Start looking or at least have a back up plan. I found out that I could survive on unemployment so took it from there. I should have been on the look-out much sooner, but I am one of those old school dedicated employee types (sucker) that thought the a similar thing would happen as the first time.

    You learn best from the harder lessons. This time I learned "Look out for number one!"
  16. Maverick Blues

    Maverick Blues Being a Thumper is all about ATTITUDE!

    Apr 28, 2005
    Richmond, VA
    Heh... at this point I'm thinking hard about starting a gumball vending enterprise. I figure between 100 to 200 machines will get me as much net income as I'm making now. But I'm no salesman, and landing space to place the machines will be the tough part for me. So here's the offer:

    Move down to Virginia, do the selling jobs to get the gumball machines into good locations, handle a third of the restocking and money pickup, and I'll split the income with ya 50/50. We'd have to get the routes up to more like 400 machines to cover both our incomes, but I figure we can still cover all the routes in two weeks out of each month. That leaves us plenty of time free to work out some sort of bass duo act. ;)


    P.S. You know I'm feeling desperate if I'm considering gumball vending as a career... :rolleyes:
  17. :D

    Sounds like a plan, we will have to do lunch sometime.

    One stipulation, we will have to do Red Hots as well. They're my favorite.
  18. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Lacey, WA
    Way to go Chunk! Good on ya' buddy! Something good will come up. Good job of sticking to your guns.

  19. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Definitely not the decision I would have made in this situation. Good luck.
  20. Maverick Blues

    Maverick Blues Being a Thumper is all about ATTITUDE!

    Apr 28, 2005
    Richmond, VA
    "Red Hots" as in Ferrara Pan cinammon Red Hots? Yeah, they're great, and I'll probably have a wholesale account with them since I'm into Atomic Fireballs. :D


    "Our bass player has Atomic Fireballs. Uh... wait..."