Girsh Alarm Company / Breach of contract
I took a job with Girsh Alarm Company in November of 05. The job advertised was for $83K/yr. The job offered was $45K/yr. When I mentioned to Harry Girsh that I was looking for at least $65K he said "I guarantee you will make $65 thousand here." When I came on board I was made to sign an Employee Agreement. In this agreement there are two points worthy of note:
1. "We will guarantee the ability to work overtime in order to achieve the goal of $64,000 earnings per year... These monies can be earned provided that Art comes into our offices or other assigned work locations and makes himself available to perform work. We expect Art to work a normal 40hour work week plus overtime of at least 3.5 hours in order to earn at least the sum indicated above.
Harry or Jodie Girsh or their designated representative will sit down with Art after th end of each calendar month in order to review the number of hours worked to ensure that he is 'on track' for the totals he wishes to earn.
We feel comfortable that Art will be able to easily achieve the desired monies based on the previous job history. He has indicated that he spnt up to 28 hours a week overtime, of which an average 20 hours a week overtime was spent on the j ob as well as up to an additional 8 hours working from home."
2. A non compete clause was part of this agreement in which, after separation, I could not work for a competitor within a 25 mile radius for two years. Additionally, I could not directly compete with Girsh Alarm Company for a full ten years.
I didn't mind signing the non compete. I've signed them before and the only time I"d ever seen a company enforce their non compete was if a former employee sought to influence a current client of the former employer's. And in fact, there were two employees of Girsh Alarm who quit (one in 2005 and one in 2006) who went to work for a major competitor and nothing was done about it except for a phone call.
Regarding 1: Harry and Jodie actively saught to minimize my overtime in as little as six months. In May and again in September of 2006 I was verbally told to cut my overtime. Again in February of 2007 I was requested to cut my hours and then in June of that same year I was given a memo asking what we could do to minimize my overtime. Later that month I had a meeting with Harry about the memo and when I asked him about the guarantee to work overtime under my contract his response shocked me. "That doesn't apply anymore since you are not in the position you were hired for." (In the middle of 06 I was asked to go into sales for the company). "I guess I should have redone your contract at that time."
I was stunned. For many months Harry had been telling me that Jodie wanted to fire me. "Don't take it personally" he said. "She just wants it to be her and I like it used to be." For months Harry had been telling me he wanted to close the company because he was 'unhappy.' He was unhappy with our dispatcher, unhappy with all of the techs, unhappy with the A/R person, unhappy, unhappy, unhappy.
I thought is this the way they nullify their contracts? At will? So in July I started to look for another job and in August I was offered one with ADT. I accepted.
I gave notice (unlike previous employees who simply just stopped showing up. Indeed one even damaged a vehicle and left it parked on the curb in front of our building unlocked with the key on the seat), I returned all items belonging to Girsh Alarm (one previous employee, according to Harry anyway, stole a thousand dollars worth of equipment and refused to return it), I worked right through five o'clock of my last day, going on sales calls and preparing proposals. I made copious notes on any proposal that was outstanding so as to bring them on board seamlessly after my departure.
To my surprise Harry and Jodie held me to the non compete clause of the contract that Harry had, not three months earlier, said did not apply any longer. He told me that ADT had deep pockets and that if they would 'pay me I would let discount the non compete clause' ... he said this was Jodie's idea and he felt it a good one.
I begged and pleaded with Harry over the next week as ADT rescinded their offer due to the non compete but to no avail. ADT's legal department sent Harry and Jodie a letter guaranteeing that I would not solicit any clients that flew the Girsh flag and that was not good enough. I guess Harry and Jodie figured since they don't stand by their written guarantees no one else does either.
And now here's the kicker. Here's what fine upstanding members of the Montgomery County Community they are. I had earned and had not used 40 hours of accrued vacation and free day time. Jodie would send out a monthly sheet stating what the employee had earned, what he/she had used, and what they had left. There is no 'use them or lose them' policy at Girsh. Now Jodie is not paying me this (MY) time.
Because of their greed I am currently unemployed. And now, out of spite, she is not paying me my vacation/free day time.
Now each employee working there has their own horror stories when it comes to Harry and Jodie Girsh. Former employees have their horror stories about Harry and Jodie Girsh. If they shaft their employees in this way one can't help but to wonder about their customers with regard to finances.
I promised I would not disclose Girsh pricing and, unlike Harry and Jodie Girsh, I am a man of my word. But could I tell you stories!