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Case Study – Auto Finance


Small auto finance company with about 50 employees.


Business had been booming for this company, which led to increased demands on the underwriting staff.
Members of the sales department (12 employees) felt that members of the underwriting department (15 employees) were being non-communicative. They believed this was causing some loans to fail to close for customers.

Meanwhile, members of the underwriting department felt that members of the sales department were treating them disrespectfully. This perception prompted the underwriters to minimize their interactions with the sales team.

Human Resources had been receiving complaints from both sides, and they needed a way to resolve this tension without adding resentment.


Dan Simon recognized the following needs:

  • Clear the air between these two departments
  • Develop a feeling of understanding between both departments
  • Cultivate respect between members of each department

In other words, each department needed to feel the members of the other understood their situation and had respect for them. Dan began by sending an email to all affected employees, encouraging them to contact him if they wanted to be involved in resolving their interdepartmental challenges.
Several employees contacted Dan, and he listened in detail to their perspectives on the conflict. Dan also encouraged them to reach out to their most distressed coworkers, and ask them to discuss the situation with him as well.
In the ensuing conversations, Dan explained that a facilitated group meeting would allow the affected employees to address their concerns directly and on their own terms. These conversations cultivated buy-in among the employees most central to the conflict, which was key to achieving resolution.
The facilitated conversation ultimately involved eight employees (three from sales and five from accounting). It lasted three hours and resulted in a genuine clearing of the air between employees who had previously felt profoundly insulted by each other.
The conversation also inspired a joint agreement to change the company’s bonus policy. This helped the underwriting department feel they were being treated more fairly, and the sales department know that underwriting would be incentivized to increase efficiency.


  • All affected employees reported significant improvement in the workplace atmosphere

  • The company experienced zero employee turnover during the subsequent two years

Two years after the intervention, supervisors in both departments report that all is now harmonious and morale is very high. In the words of one of the owners (who oversees sales):
“It was really a miracle. I had assumed that resentment between these departments was inevitable. But Dan was somehow able to help them all understand each other, and regain a sense of appreciation for each other. The atmosphere around the office has been much lighter in the last two years, and we’ve been more productive than ever. I give Dan full credit for that.”
If your workplace needs to experience transformational results like these, contact Dan to schedule a free 30-minute consultation.