I’ll never forget the day my father, Neil, stood on a box in front of the entire company. He was the President; I was 22 years old and was the entire “IT department.” 90% of the 150 employees worked in the factory.
He stood up and said, “Our company is in trouble, but we have a plan to survive and then grow again. Part of the plan is asking all employees to take a 10% pay cut.
“The senior staff will be taking a 20% pay cut.
“I know that this is not easy for anyone, but we commit to raising the wages back as soon as possible. Any questions?”
After a few complaints, a tall and broad man named “Big John” raised his hand. He said with a crack in his voice, “I’ve been laid-off twice. No one ever asked my opinion or gave me a choice.
“Thank you for asking. I support the reduction 100%.”
Everyone fell in line after that.
The company survived and wages were eventually restored.
The lessons I learned?
Are pay cuts an option now? Yes.
All options are on the table.
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