Is it legal to raise sales quotas and then fire reps who don’t meet them?

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in Firing,Human Resources

Q. As a large retail business, we employ several demo reps who present products to shoppers in the hope they’ll buy them. Recently, we’ve had to put increasing pressure on our demo reps to increase sales up to 200%. If a demo rep doesn’t meet the new goal, can we terminate him or her? Do they have legal recourse should they be fired?

A. You are entitled to raise the sales goals and terminate reps who don’t meet them (assuming that the reps do not have a contract that addresses this). You should impose the new goal prospectively and treat employees consistently. In other words, you should not terminate some reps who don’t meet the new goal, but not others.

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