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Employee Planning to Compete

Discussion in 'General Business Forum' started by Offcentre, Jan 4, 2017.

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  1. Offcentre

    Offcentre UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    6 1
    What would you do if you had an employee who was planning to go into competition with you? Still employed but in the background setting up their own thing. Looking to also try and take other staff.

    This is a scenario we currently have. It is of no major concern really and they would struggle if they did. They are unaware of our knowledge of this and the staff that matter which they would like are fully loyal our way, keeping us updated anytime they are encouraged to go with them.

    I understand people wanting to do their own thing but as I know many of their plans and timescales, I could make it far harder for them if I require. They are quite young and think everything is easy and all will just fall into place.
    Posted: Jan 4, 2017 By: Offcentre Member since: Jan 4, 2017
  2. Newchodge

    Newchodge UKBF Big Shot Free Member

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    Do you have any form of restrictive covenant in your contract? Or any form of restriction on outside activities? How long has the employee in question worked for you?
    Posted: Jan 4, 2017 By: Newchodge Member since: Nov 8, 2012
  3. James1974

    James1974 UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    15 1
    Personally I would start restricting their involvement in your business and then discreetly manage them out the door somehow. Loyalty is important above all else but sometimes I guess its naïve to expect it, as after all we all started somewhere.

    This has happened to me on a couple of occasions in the past with key employees and each time it really hurt me personally when it happened as I felt they were disloyal and if I'm honest I was worried about the competition. In reality on both occasions they left took some people with them and failed. Sometimes from an employee perspective your business can look easy to replicate and easy money but we all know that this is not the case. You have I assume years of experience and an established business.

    The only other option is to incentivise them to stay and offer them something that boosts them financially and in terms of career progression. This may be what they are looking for? But speaking from my experiences I wish I had not been so loyal to them and treated them so well as I should have got rid of them well before they walked.
    Posted: Jan 4, 2017 By: James1974 Member since: Jan 4, 2017
  4. The Byre

    The Byre UKBF Legend Full Member

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    This "It's us or them!" attitude is completely wrong! Your aspiring employee should not be regarded as an enemy, but as a business opportunity.

    Offer him/her a franchise or a partnership in a branch in another town. This is not disloyalty by this person, but a natural desire to grow and get a real career going.

    This has happened to us twice in the past ten years and both times, I encouraged it and one went for something else in the end and the other is now a success story and bringing us business.

    Anybody who wants to better themselves must never be regarded as an enemy. After all, we all want to better ourselves and you can't go into battle with everybody out there!
    Posted: Jan 4, 2017 By: The Byre Member since: Aug 13, 2013
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  5. Offcentre

    Offcentre UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    6 1
    Newchodge - it would be very hard to uphold any non-compete clause in a contract under restriction of trade from what I have heard.

    James - it is a bit late to restrict access but I have taken other steps to make it awkward to use information gathered from within. Hard to restrict skills picked up though and general knowledge. I fully understand the desire for someone to have their own business so understand the differing levels of loyalty from some employees. Some want the regular wage and career progression and others want to sit the other side of the table.

    TheByre - this is the route I have tried to work out in creating an offshoot. Problem being, this person is not really capable of what they think they are and will inevitably learn the hard way. I don't even think they will learn from their mistakes after this until the mature.

    I still get on well with this person and understand their thinking. Just haven't yet decided on my preferred course of action.
    Posted: Jan 4, 2017 By: Offcentre Member since: Jan 4, 2017
  6. James1974

    James1974 UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    15 1
    maybe my burn them at the stake approach maybe a little of an over emotional reaction. perhaps it might be worth sitting down with the employee and telling him what you have heard? might open up other options or prompt action on one side or another?
    Posted: Jan 4, 2017 By: James1974 Member since: Jan 4, 2017
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