We all like to think that our employees are the best, most trustworthy, faithful people in the world. But sometimes they can do some pretty rotten things--specifically rip you off. Here, pool and spa professionals share their employee theft horror stories.

The Incident: I have been a victim only once, although it couldn’t be proven. A hot tub was stolen, along with a trailer to put it on. We suspect it was a former employee. It was taken from a secure area and it took too much inside information to pull it off. If you hadn’t worked for us, you wouldn’t know what to do with the trailer.

The Fix: We installed better lighting that is motion activated, but considered [the theft] more of an anomaly than an ongoing issue. We have not had an issue since.
— Chris Callanan, president, North Shore Pool & Spa in Wakefield, Mass.

The Incident: We made a hire, and things looked great. But within two weeks, a deposit for $500 cash went missing. The key to access the cash was hidden from everybody but the manager, and somehow this person found the key, opened the box and stole the $500. Of course they denied it. As it turned out, this employee had a drug problem.

The Fix: We are very careful how we hire. We do not drug test as part of the application process, but new employees agree to a random drug test once hired.
— Jeff Bailey, co-owner, Spring Dance Hot Tubs in Jamison, PA.

The Incident: An employee removed an expensive item from a shelf, put it on eBay for far less than she could have gotten for it. Other dealers saw it and pitched a fit to the manufacturer. The manufacturer had someone buy it…and it arrived with [the employee’s] return home address. We were mortified. My two managers drive to the store, she confesses and is fired. That person was an excellent employee, so it was heartbreaking. It turns out she had gambling debts.

The Fix: We use a proprietary system enabling tighter inventory control.

— Anonymous