Author Topic: Job Question  (Read 3060 times)

westerndog

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Job Question
« on: September 07, 2012, 08:27:59 AM »
I work for a small company that has several offices; the one I work at has almost twice the volume as the other centers. We do receive a very small bonus for productivity, but it doesn't come close to making up for the extra workload. (All of the professional employees are essentially paid the same base rate, which is actually fairly market competitive). My question is: Do I make a stink about the discrepancy, or just suck it up? There is one other guy at my office that seems quite content to be fully taken advantage of-he has several kids, probably a ton of debt, and really no choice.

If I do push and the ownership does nothing, I feel at that point I would have to leave-I'm not sure that I want to do that at this time. Another variable is that the company is extremely short staffed in my particular specialty (and it is not easy to recruit quickly)-if I left, it would place an extreme burden on all of the others. I know that I am in a strong bargaining position, but I don't want to push myself into a corner just for a few bucks.

Anyone have any advice? Anything that I am missing? Is there another solution that could satisfy all?

tooqk4u22

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Re: Job Question
« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2012, 09:38:37 AM »
No boss will ever give you more $ if you don't ask for it, but you need to be careful with how you approach it and also be prepared for any consequences (like you not wanting to stay if they say no or worse if they say no it creates ill will toward you).

Sounds like you like your job and are being fairly compensated or better at this point, and if everyone in your group makes the same and performs the same then to me asking for a raise doesn't make sense. 

I also think bring it up in the context of claiming the other offices aren't doing their fair share will not come off well. Keep in mind the owners have more visibility than you do and there may be other things going on.

If anything I would approach it as an opportunity to make the company stronger/better and maximize its resources and quality.  To do this you would have to have hard facts about productivity and quality and make a case to transfer some of the work load to the other offices.

AJ

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Re: Job Question
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2012, 09:50:22 AM »
I would ignore the perceived volume at other locations. If you had no knowledge of what was going on there, would you think you were being fairly compensated? If yes, do nothing. If no, ask for a raise. How hard other employees may or may not be working is irrelevant. Like tooqk said, you may not have all the information that the owners have. Reminds me of this parable from the bible...

The Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard

...a landowner went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. He agreed to pay them a denarius for the day and sent them into his vineyard.

About nine in the morning he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace doing nothing. He told them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’ So they went.

He went out again about noon and about three in the afternoon and did the same thing. About five in the afternoon he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, ‘Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?’

‘Because no one has hired us,’ they answered.

He said to them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard.’

When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the workers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last ones hired and going on to the first.’

The workers who were hired about five in the afternoon came and each received a denarius. So when those came who were hired first, they expected to receive more. But each one of them also received a denarius. When they received it, they began to grumble against the landowner. ‘These who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’

But he answered one of them, ‘I am not being unfair to you, friend. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you. Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?’

arebelspy

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Re: Job Question
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2012, 10:03:32 AM »
I would ignore the perceived volume at other locations. If you had no knowledge of what was going on there, would you think you were being fairly compensated? If yes, do nothing. If no, ask for a raise. How hard other employees may or may not be working is irrelevant.

This is exactly what I was going to say.  If your compensation is commiserate for your work, good.  If not, ask for a raise.

But life won't always be "fair," and those people getting the same for doing less work may exist. 

If there's downsizing, who are they more likely to let go?  Probably the people doing less.
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westerndog

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Re: Job Question
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2012, 03:29:29 PM »
Sincere thanks for the thoughtful replies.

I think I would like to add a few things to help clarify:

>there is no perception-we have the data (real numbers in real time) to review day by day; over the past six months, our office productivity is between 80-120% higher than the other office(s)-it is in black and white and indisputable. Basically the owners readily admit that our office subsidizes the others; in fact, we are so much busier, when we bring in people from the other office to fill in for call-offs or whatever, the bitching and moaning is deafening. The other offices are new and are sacred cows (close to owners' homes, brand new, big$ in build outs, etc -they are in suboptimal locations and probably will never get as busy as we are

>there is no downsizing, other than shuttering the business; we are in a very specialized field without easy access to warm bodies; the barrier to entry is very high and there are just far more jobs than applicants-we are looking for four more right now (for past three months-still no hires).

>I agree that I am being fairly compensated, but I just don't want to feel like a sucker; I am generating a ton of revenue for the owners, while the other offices are treading water at best.

Anyway, thanks for reading. Any other thoughts would be appreciated.

arebelspy

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Re: Job Question
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2012, 07:02:16 PM »
If there's downsizing, who are they more likely to let go?  Probably the people doing less.

>there is no downsizing, other than shuttering the business; we are in a very specialized field without easy access to warm bodies; the barrier to entry is very high and there are just far more jobs than applicants-we are looking for four more right now (for past three months-still no hires).

My point was not about downsizing, but rather about who will likely be recognized/rewarded for their work.  Whether that's not being downsized, or being given promotions or bonuses or raises.  If you continue to outperform, don't you think it likely or at least possible that it'll be recognized in some way?  Ask for annual reviews and go prepared as to why your compensation should be raised.

Don't bring it up out of the blue, say something like "I've been here X amount of time and wonder if we could schedule a review soon" or something to that effect.  Don't complain about the other branches or even compare yourself to them.  Bring up how productive you have been and how much you've been earning the company.

If you are doing great, I'd think they'd recognize it at some point, and if they still aren't, yes, it's reasonable to request a performance review.

All that aside, if you think you're being compensated fairly .. great.  Be happy and do your best, and it will all work out for the best, and you'll likely be recognized for that as well.
We are two former teachers who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, and now travel the world full time with two kids.
If you want to know more about me, or how we did that, or see lots of pictures, this Business Insider profile tells our story pretty well.
We (rarely) blog at AdventuringAlong.com. Check out our Now page to see what we're up to currently.