In all my years in sales at CSMI (18), I have never encountered any "price fixing". I have always had the flexablity to work with customers to make sure they were able to stay comeptitive within their market. I can only recall a few times having to even get approval for any prices I gave out. And those were during times of extreme price changes within the industry. I have never had anyone tell me or anyone I know of at CSMI where prices were to be set. That is not to say I could (or would) give out any price I felt like and not expect to have an explanation when or if asked about it (by management or even a production worker). That is the great part about being an employee-owned company, we are all accountable to each other for our actions and need to make smart business decisions for our territory and our company. I have always felt I "owned" my territory and took care of it like it was my own business...because it is.
Some people need a little more "hand holding" because if left on their own, they could easily set prices too low or too high. We are not here to "buy" business or to make extremely high margins. So, any good manager needs to keep in touch with what is happening to make sure his sales team does not go out and start undercutting the competition because that is our only option. So, if having to get a managers approval is what is meant by "price fixing", then I would guess that probably does happen in some cases.