When one begins their first dead-end job, they learn one thing: management is crazy. Whether it is retail, call centers, fast-food, or maintenance, management is always there breathing down your neck. It is a sign of maturity to ignore these sadistic managers – but they infect far more workplaces than we thought – and it could affect even the customer. At Wells Fargo, we see a great example of perverse management forcing their goals on their inferiors. Here is what actually happened at Wells Fargo.
Upper management at Wells Fargo forced employees to open up unauthorized bank accounts to meet their incredibly unrealistic sales goals. These unauthorized bank accounts were opened up without customer’s permission and has been a practice in the company since 2011. CEO John Stumpf has set the goal of 8 accounts per customer because, “8 rhythms with great”. You cannot make up a better management fraud story. Since then, over 2 million accounts have been opened for customers.
But that isn’t even the worst part: Wells Fargo charged the customers with the fees associated with the accounts! That’s right! Not only did upper management tell their employees to commit fraud on a colossal scale, but they charged the customers as well. In response, Stumpf is being chewed out by both the House and the Senate. Wells Fargo has already taken action by firing over 5,300 of their employees. And no: the fired employees were not from management – they were the people opening unauthorized accounts. So the management who ordered the criminal move are not even taking responsibility.
The company thus far is paying $185 million in penalties. But the managers who ordered their employees – at the risk of losing their job – are safe. For now. The next congressional hearing is this Thursday. We can only hope those who encouraged this act and those who did not blow the whistle will receive their justice.