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Does Someone Have to Go: Employees Vote with Their Hearts Not Their Heads


Last week on Does Someone Have to Go, we watched as the employees of Velocity Merchant Services roasted their co-workers in candid videos. That was followed by a mortifying round where salaries were revealed and from there, the group chose the three employees they thought deserved to be fired. Can the bottom three redeem themselves?

Up for unemployment was grandfatherly salesman Uncle Mike who spends more time socializing than selling; lazy collections manager Zoe; and Kout, the company’s highly-paid bookkeeper who also happens to be the owner’s mother.  


In last night’s part two, those bottom three employees were given a chance to redeem themselves in the eyes of their co-workers. But the speeches they gave were more of a lesson in what not to say when the boss gives you a bad review.

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Zoe blames his poor performance on a lack of the proper tools. He says he’s been asking the company to invest in the software that would allow him to track open accounts in a timelier manner. Pleased by the passion he’s showing, some of his co-workers start to come around. To seal the deal, Zoe plays the pity card by saying that he has to work two jobs just to make ends meet.

Even if working a second job isn’t against company policy, it’s not a good idea to mention it when you’re called on the carpet for being lazy. Bad move, my man.

Uncle Mike takes the laid back approach. He tells the staff that he’s been “pacing himself” up until now and that going forward he’ll sharpen his focus. Huh? Unless you’re a long distance runner by trade, pacing yourself is a poor excuse for poor performance.

Mike says he loves the company and his ultimate goal is to become a sales trainer. He’s good with people and the staff admits that he does bring in very loyal clients – just not enough of them to justify his meager salary.

Kout starts off by defending her $70,000 salary saying that she’s been with the company for thirteen years. She was there through the start-up struggles and now she deserves to reap some of the reward. The staff might agree if she was a partner in the business, but she handles the accounting (with the help of two outside agencies.)

The staff also resents the fact that they can’t speak freely to her for fear of upsetting her daughter, the boss. And Kout gets to come and go as she please, working only part-time for her full-time salary.

When it looks like the employees aren’t falling for it, Kout pulls out the big guns. She refers to the company as her third grandchild. She brings the room to tears with her speech but even her own son knows you have to run a business with your head not your heart. He excuses himself from the room so the non-family members can do what they have to do.

Things get really tense when VMS owner Dema returns and finds her mother on the chopping block. When she demands an explanation, only Lorraine from marketing has the nerve to say what everyone else was thinking. From the look on Dema’s face, Lorraine figures there’s a pink slip in her future, but Dema’s husband comes to the rescue. He calls Lorraine brave and basically sides with the employees against his mother-in-law.

Ouch – couch for you for the next week at least.

Finally, it’s time to hand down the proclamations.

Zoe is put on probation for 90 days and he gets the software he’s been asking for.

Seeing that the end is near, Uncle Mike makes one last plea. He talks about loyalty and how he’s always the first one to help a co-worker in need. It’s not about the money, he says. It’s about being happy when you come to work and VMS makes him happy. Oddly, the employees change their vote and put him on a 90 day probation as well.

The employees also agree to keep Kout on board as long as she takes a $20,000 pay cut and doesn’t get any more special treatment. Bad news for Lorraine who spoke out against her, now she has to keep working with the woman and her daughter.

Three months after the filming, the camera crew returned to VMS to see how things are going. Dema and her husband are pleased. The staff is more motivated and sales are up. Uncle Mike knuckled down and doubled his sales but Zoe couldn’t meet his goals so he quit before the 90 days were up.

As for Kout, Dema didn’t have the heart to cut her paycheck, but mom does spend more time in the office. Which isn’t necessarily a good thing.

Does Someone Have to Go airs Thursdays at 9:00 on Fox.

What Do You Think?

Is it ever appropriate to make a business decision with your heart instead of your head? Let us know in the comments below.

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Photo Credit: Chris Tomko/FOX

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