Author Topic: Work petition to address compensation cuts  (Read 1255 times)

dragonwalker

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Work petition to address compensation cuts
« on: January 13, 2018, 11:27:44 AM »
I work for a large (nations top 5) national bank as a personal banker (branch staff who open accounts, applies for credit, loans, business accounts, servicing). This year a new variable compensation plan was rolled out that dramatically cut into that pay. I earn a base salary of $42,500 (Los Angeles area) which is pretty typical of what most bankers earn. I made a variable compensation for 2017 of about $20,000 bringing the total to about $60K. These changes I estimate would take about $10K from me. Nationwide there are about 2,000 bankers and about 30 in our area.

Typically the company manages to tweak this comp every year so it's a little worse than the prior year but this has been the most dramatic in the 5 years I've worked in this position. I understand the company has the right to make any and all changes but I feel that it is worth putting forth a greater effort to make my concerns heard especially since these particular changes are said to apply only through the end of March where a final determination will be made for the rest of the year so I feel because these changes are not final this is the best time to enact changes and voice concerns.

I'm thinking of circulating a petition among my fellow bankers to sign. I am trying to craft the petition to not have any vindictive or accusatory language and to keep it as close as possible to facts. My goal is to have all 30 of the bankers in our area sign this and bring it to our area manager during a scheduled meeting. The goal would be to have some of the changes reversed to make the effect less dramatic. My concern is "my return on investment," neither the area manager or even his boss has direct control over compensation and my past experience has been that he has tended to rationalize and sweep aside any concerns people have as it relates to compensation. I see his job not so much as an advocate for us but more like a way to keep control over the flock. However that is why I think something more substantial with a more unified message could be more effective. In all of your experiences have any of you dealt with these kind of changes in this way? What was the result? Is there perhaps another way to address it?

Another concern is the only reasonable way for me to circulate this petition before the scheduled meeting next week is using the company e-mail to send it out and requesting everyone sign it before hand. Is there any possibility that doing this would be a violation of my duties as an employee (ofcourse I know the company can do whatever but I wanted to make sure it's not an auto termination thing). 

Part of me wants to go to an extreme and encourage everyone to stop producing and cause a major workplace disruption but in reality I strongly believe my co workers don't have the heart for this and it would probably just result in me being fired.   
« Last Edit: January 13, 2018, 11:29:39 AM by dragonwalker »

Frankies Girl

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2018, 12:07:02 PM »
You're more likely to end up on management's shit list and/or let go for turning in a petition to them regarding cuts/freezes in benefits/compensation. In fact, I'd bet it would be the given response and you'd also have to live with the guilt of getting others fired as well if you actually convinced any poor, gullible soul to sign it.

Even if you only include facts and don't make any inflammatory statements... they do realize exactly what they are doing. Your pointing it out to them shows you may not have a very clear grasp about how businesses change, and will make you and anyone that signs it look naive, aggressive, and unprofessional along with showing very poor judgement.

Businesses do sometimes reduce or freeze bonuses, compensation and other perks. The answer is not a petition. It is a sit down with your immediate supervisor to discuss your situation specifically, and if they can't do anything about it, then your next step is to find another job that pays you what you think you are worth. Not a petition. This is not an outrage like them refusing to pay workers overtime or a other seriously egregious whistleblowing situation where you call out and condemn this behavior; this is a business decision regarding perfectly legal, across-the-board adjustments to compensation/bonuses that have been occurring for years apparently, and made likely to position your company's bottom line in a better light. So yeah, really don't do this.

This reminds me of the interns that had a fit about the dress code at a company and thought it would be smart to turn in a petition to demand changes after being told by their supervisors that they would not be allowed any flexibility. The person organizing it thought it was a great idea and sure to make their voice heard and open a discussion... instead they learned about how businesses aren't going to put up with any push-back from the workers when they are told this is how it is, and no just because you don't agree with something doesn't mean you group together and try to force them to change anyway. They were all fired.

Quote
The proposal was written professionally like examples I have learned about in school, and our arguments were thought out and well-reasoned. We werenít even given a chance to discuss it.

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But instead, you assumed you knew better (despite being in a position where the whole point is that you donít have experience and are there to learn) and then went about it in a pretty aggressive way. A petition is Ö well, itís not something you typically see at work. It signals that you think that if you get enough signatures, your company will feel pressured to act, and thatís just not how this stuff works. A company is not going to change its dress code because its interns sign a petition.

http://www.askamanager.org/2016/06/i-was-fired-from-my-internship-for-writing-a-proposal-for-a-more-flexible-dress-code.html
« Last Edit: January 13, 2018, 12:13:22 PM by Frankies Girl »
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crispy

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2018, 12:22:36 PM »
You're more likely to end up on management's shit list and/or let go for turning in a petition to them regarding cuts/freezes in benefits/compensation. In fact, I'd bet it would be the given response and you'd also have to live with the guilt of getting others fired as well if you actually convinced any poor, gullible soul to sign it.

Even if you only include facts and don't make any inflammatory statements... they do realize exactly what they are doing. Your pointing it out to them shows you may not have a very clear grasp about how businesses change, and will make you and anyone that signs it look naive, aggressive, and unprofessional along with showing very poor judgement.

Businesses do sometimes reduce or freeze bonuses, compensation and other perks. The answer is not a petition. It is a sit down with your immediate supervisor to discuss your situation specifically, and if they can't do anything about it, then your next step is to find another job that pays you what you think you are worth. Not a petition. This is not an outrage like them refusing to pay workers overtime or a other seriously egregious whistleblowing situation where you call out and condemn this behavior; this is a business decision regarding perfectly legal, across-the-board adjustments to compensation/bonuses that have been occurring for years apparently, and made likely to position your company's bottom line in a better light. So yeah, really don't do this.

This reminds me of the interns that had a fit about the dress code at a company and thought it would be smart to turn in a petition to demand changes after being told by their supervisors that they would not be allowed any flexibility. The person organizing it thought it was a great idea and sure to make their voice heard and open a discussion... instead they learned about how businesses aren't going to put up with any push-back from the workers when they are told this is how it is, and no just because you don't agree with something doesn't mean you group together and try to force them to change anyway. They were all fired.

Quote
The proposal was written professionally like examples I have learned about in school, and our arguments were thought out and well-reasoned. We werenít even given a chance to discuss it.

Quote
But instead, you assumed you knew better (despite being in a position where the whole point is that you donít have experience and are there to learn) and then went about it in a pretty aggressive way. A petition is Ö well, itís not something you typically see at work. It signals that you think that if you get enough signatures, your company will feel pressured to act, and thatís just not how this stuff works. A company is not going to change its dress code because its interns sign a petition.

http://www.askamanager.org/2016/06/i-was-fired-from-my-internship-for-writing-a-proposal-for-a-more-flexible-dress-code.html

FrankiesGirl nailed it again. A petition in this situation will just make you come across as immature. Your best bet is to start job searching.

SimpleCycle

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2018, 12:28:32 PM »
Yeah, don’t do that.  That’s not how things work and frankly comes off as pretty juvenile.

Discuss your compensation directly with your boss, and if you don’t like what you hear, start looking for another job.

use2betrix

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2018, 12:30:05 PM »
As mentioned - talk to your immediate supervisor.

Maybe youíre irreplaceable. But thatís up to you to decide the leverage you have. Personally - if theyíre ok cutting your wages, I doubt they feel they couldnít find someone else to fill your shoes.

Paul der Krake

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2018, 12:32:29 PM »
This is clearly a hint by your company that your job is viewed as a cost center with little future. The human banker jobs aren't exactly poised for growth in the coming years.

Get out before a robo-banker gives you the boot.

COEE

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2018, 07:42:10 PM »
I'd be circulating resumes not petitions.  Don't like your pay?  Test it on the open market!  The two top 5 banks I've done business with in the past have both had the worst of everything (worst customer service, worst interest rates, worst fees, etc.).  I can't imagine that working at these giants is much fun either.

Credit Unions have a good reputation around where I live.  I'd be looking at them first.  Next on my list would be some of the bigger online banks.

obstinate

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2018, 10:51:09 PM »
What everyone else said is true, but I'll go a step further. There is no way for a petition to help you here. It can only hurt. I'd be shocked if there's a single instance of a petition leading  increased compensation at a large company in the last two decades.

There is no upside to this. Don't do it. Find a job that pays more or accept that the new salary is how much your labor can be obtained for on the open market. Those are your options.

FINate

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2018, 12:12:47 AM »
Agree with what others have said. Circulating a petition is guaranteed to be negative ROI. Your time and energy is better spent advancing your career, and/or looking for a different job. Spend some time on sites like salary.com/glassdoor.com to compare your compensation and get an idea of how much career growth is possible.

Also, is personal banker pay greater by enough in a HCOL area such as LA to make it worthwhile? Could be worthwhile to consider doing the same job in a LCOL metro. Pay would be a little lower but overall COL significantly lower.

dragonwalker

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2018, 01:05:16 AM »
Thank you all for the replies. I have considered what all of you have said and did some thinking on my own. I will not be creating or signing any petition. In fact the changes motivated me to apply for another internal job that just happened to open up recently in our company which I think is a good opportunity that would take me in a different direction.

Little Aussie Battler

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2018, 01:18:34 AM »
Is this a flat reduction in commission payments?  Or are they re-shaping the payments to more heavily reward those who hit high sales targets?  Seems quite aggressive to simply reduce total compensation for their entire frontline staff (although certainly not unheard of).

Good luck with the internal application.  If this doesn't work, I would definitely be getting my resume out there for other positions.  Personally I would get out of the branch network - the sad reality is that banks globally are going to remain under pressure to take cost out of these physical channels, particularly for things like basic account opening and servicing.

gooki

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Re: Work petition to address compensation cuts
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2018, 05:32:47 AM »
Unionise your 2,000 colleagues and enter into negotiations.
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