27/10/2020

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Jeff Lewis Fires Tyler Meyerkoth, Flipping Out Design Assistant

Jeff Lewis has said goodbye to another longtime employee.

The Flipping Out designer has let go of his design assistant of four years, Tyler Meyerkorth, he revealed during his SiriusXM radio show on September 30. 

Tyler joined the Jeff Lewis Design team when Jeff’s assistant Jenni Pulos-Nassos went on maternity leave after the birth of her second child, Georgia Grace, in 2017. Tyler earned a B.S. in Interior Design from the Art Institute of California—Los Angeles and worked “for a handful of design companies” before coming to work for Jeff in Season 11 of Flipping Out, according to his bio on BravoTV.com.

On Jeff Lewis Live, the eponymous host shared that he had recently let go of an employee, not identifying them at first, after what seemed to be a furniture order mishap. “My friend Krista is moving to a new house, she wanted a couple of pieces of new furniture. I ordered it, it was delivered, and then I got two invoices. And so, I forwarded to my employee and said, ‘What is this? I don’t understand. What is this?'” Jeff recalled. “And the person said, ‘I don’t know. It must be some sort of accounting error. Let me look into it.'” 

Jeff said that he then called the owner of Alder & Tweed to get more information. “I met with the employee in person and said, ‘This is the information I got from the owner of Alder & Tweed. It looks like this was delivered, and then you had a conversation that the white glove, you actually negotiated the white glove delivery service from X to Y,'” Jeff told the employee, who he claimed said in response, “‘No, I don’t know anything about it.'”

Jeff said that he asked the employee if he knew anyone who lived on the street the furniture was sent to. The employee said that he has a friend who lives on that street and suggested that “maybe he ordered the sofa and used your discount,” according to Jeff.

After feeling like his employee wasn’t telling the truth, Jeff said that he called the owner of Alder & Tweed again, who confirmed that Jeff’s employee exchanged texts with someone at the furniture company for the sofa delivery.

Jeff accidentally let it slip that Tyler was the employee involved in this incident and shared what happened when he confronted him with the new information from Alder & Tweed. “I said, ‘Look, I’m gonna look past the betrayal of this, and I’m gonna choose to focus on all the years that you have devoted to me and my business,'” Jeff said. “‘And I really feel like I care about you, and you’re a part of my family.'” 

Jeff said that he then parted ways with Tyler. “We’ve come to a crossroads here, and you’re not happy here. That’s obvious. You haven’t been 100 percent into the business,” Jeff recalled of their conversation. “So I want this to be amicable, I want this to be civil, I want this to be friendly, and I want to do this differently than how I’ve done this in the past with people that I care about and people that have put in all the hard work.”

However, Jeff said he still thinks Tyler has a bright future in design. “I really believe in his talent. I think he is a natural at it,” he said. “I think he could have a great design business of his own. I don’t think he needs to work for anyone else.”

In fact, Jeff said he is willing to help Tyler get established in his career. “I get a lot of business, and I can’t handle it all. So I said, ‘I would like to work out a referral system with you. I will help build your business. I will refer you, and you can give me a referral fee,'” Jeff said. “So it’s like a nice stream of income for me.”

Jeff said that he has no hard feelings toward Tyler because of how much he has been there for him over the past four years. “I think once you just get past the hurt and the betrayal and you focus on the good things — which I have never been able to do that — I’m forgetting about this one moment, and I’m focusing on the past that we’ve had,” Jeff shared. “He’s had other job offers, and when I was in a real low and Gage [Edward] had left and I was stuck with all these people, he had a good job offer, and he may not know this, but I heard through the grapevine that he said to the person, ‘I can’t leave Jeff right now.’ He’s been very loyal.”

“My guess is it was for a client that he’s been moonlighting. You know, they’ve all done it. So I put myself in his position, and I choose to to think about everything he’s done for me for the past four years,” Jeff added. “The fact that he could’ve left me when I was at my lowest of low, and he stayed with me, I will love that kid forever.”

Tyler is the second Jeff Lewis Design employee to have been let go recently. Jeff opened up about another situation with an employee on his radio show last week. “We had an employee who was like, I kind of considered her like family. I sensed that there was some disloyalty. I had her sign a non-disclosure. I actually had talked to her a few times about it,” he shared in the September 21 episode of Jeff Lewis Live. “I think all along she was talking to Gage, giving him personal information.” 

After letting that employee go, Jeff claimed that she is now working for Gage, who started his own business after leaving Jeff Lewis Design following the couple’s split in 2019. “Of course, she is now working for Gage, which all that tells me now is I instinctively, intuitively knew what was going on,” Jeff alleged.

Want more Flipping Out? Watch the series in full on the Bravo app.

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