Random Observation from a Hourly Employee

I just found this, It was written back in 2016, but I do find it still appropriate even now in 2020.

I am coming from the thoughts of an hourly employee of the American Corporate Machine. I have been working for twenty plus years in the retail foodservice industry and have noticed a decrease in how many employees there are to customers. Additionally, prices for consumers are increasing. This decrease and increase I perceive began as our hourly wage (example Ohio starting wage 2007 $5.25 – 2015 $8.25). The personal concern is that with many states striving to force companies to pay a minimum of $15.00 over the next 2 to 4 years. Can the consumer and the corporate structure truly support the increase? If the minimum increases, so do all of the other wages above minimum increase, or they are supposed. Yes, having an increase in salary is excellent visually. Genuinely am I gaining anything by my state, forcing my employer to increase my pay when I can no longer quickly gain full-time work in the industry I have always worked. The food or entertainment I enjoy increases to cover the cost of the employee providing the service I am using. Additionally, the amount of team members I have to work with on a shift decreases to support the increase in money the company I work for is paying out.

Other aspects of company cost that tend to build up are couponing, double couponing, fuel perks, courtesy card discounts, or points. All of these ‘freebies’ are not free. The money to cover these ‘freebies’ has to be covered by the company. With all these accumulating costs over the next five years, where will the hourly employee be part-time or full time or unemployed due to the corporate structure consolidating as seen with Kohl’s, Walmart, and other big companies in 2016? For those that comment on forms of Social Media that customer service does not exist. Here are some thoughts the employees have to work with fewer co-workers to do the same work they did in previous years. When a company had six staff on the floor to provide “excellent” customer service, are only scheduled for one or two employees. Many are part-time and cannot obtain full-time hours that their family budget needs.
For those consumers out there frustrated and impatient with long lines; from personal experience get used to it. In many locations in the retail and foodservice industry, those lines will only increase as the demand for higher minimum wages. This increase means the leadership of corporate structure will need to reduce cost, and that will be at the register, counter, or production method. The improvements are sadly in my perception a done deal, but as consumers strive to keep in mind that the people that are waiting on you are people too and that having to interact with rude and impatient people day in and day out become tiring. To put it in a word picture, the ‘family’ member that everyone avoids do you want to interact with that individual daily. Think of this when you are impatient or rude with an employee at your favorite shopping location. That employee has to deal with short-tempered, angry people hour upon hour; there is no walking away when you are at a counter, table, or register. Rudeness toward a consumer, you should not be tolerated, but are you interacting with the worker with respect as well. Respect is a two-way street; strive to see the perspective of the other person.

Prayerfully this finds everyone trying to stay the positive side of comfortable emotionally. As mentioned in the beginning, I just found this old post that never got uploaded. Figured will still be relevant as the state and companies begin to re-open in this time of COVID-19 chaos.

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