A friend who is employed as a full time salesperson has made a complaint to his MD about his boss, a director of the company. The basis of the complaint is that his boss is not doing his job so he cannot do his (e.g. not putting customer orders through, failing to deal with customer complaints, losing business…the list is endless) and he has given solid and objective factual evidence to his MD in support of his complaint.

The problem is that the MD seems reluctant to investigate the issues and my friend is having trouble getting information from him as to what steps will be taken to resolve the problem. His director’s incompetence is severely jeopardising my friend’s revenue (and income) and causing stress, so he wants to know that it is being taken seriously. The MD does not like to rock the boat and dislikes confrontation. All he has said is that everyone will ultimately need to sit around a table and talk it through.

What is the protocol for this kind of grievance, i.e. what are the employer’s obligations in dealing with this complaint? Should he expect an answer to his complaint and within a set timeframe? How should my friend progress?