Are Your Employees Paid Well? Employee Commitment Series
This blog series focuses on nine areas that keep employees committed to your organization. In our opinion, employees stay committed when they are Involved, Paid Well, Asked for Input, Challenged, Empowered, Trusted, Valued, Appreciated, and Mentored.
Are Your Employees Paid Well?
In our last post we discussed the concept of employee involvement in the workplace. The next area focuses on helping readers understand the concept of being paid well in the workplace. Most organizations look at several areas of compensation: standard pay, perhaps health and wellness and retirement benefits, and, in some industries, bonus programs or long-term financial incentives. For the sake of brevity we will discuss two areas, standard pay and general generosity with your employees.
Standard Employee Pay
We often do compensation studies for organizations, including churches, ministries, for-profit and non-profit companies, and colleges. These studies are very important for all organizations, and should be performed at least every five years. You also should look internally at your compensation structure, being mindful of internal equity issues, especially as it relates to disparate treatment between protected-class employees.
“Most companies try to be good about keeping it up-to-date, but they tend not to do it as quickly as they should,” says Steven Slutsky, a director at Pricewaterhouse Coopers Human Resource Services in Philadelphia.
Doing a full-blown compensation study not only helps you to understand internal equity and current compensation market conditions but also helps promote a greater organizational image to your employees when they know you are performing this type of study. It is a great morale boaster, even if the wages don’t shift upward.
The most often question that we are asked is, “How do we even begin to do a salary study?” We always start the same way—leading organizations to undertake a total update and rewrite of all job descriptions across the organization. This establishes a solid baseline of what employees are doing and why.
General Generosity with Your Employees
Good-standing employees deserve more than fair wages. Scripture says, “Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain,” and “The worker deserves his wages.”
Wow, the ox was permitted to eat during its workday. Sadly, many organizations don’t extend the same consideration to the most valuable commodity of their organization—their employees. Many years ago I witnessed a young teen working at a local pizza shop, making minimum wage. The owner was a cruel, selfish man who refused to provide any food or beverage to his employees unless purchased at full price. The owner’s children would come in and help themselves to all kinds of food, which they left behind, half-eaten, to be thrown away, but the floor sweepers got nothing. The shop owner also insisted upon destroying any leftover, unsold items at the end of each evening rather than offering them to his employees. Dear leaders, please do not fall victim to becoming a tyrant in your workplace. Be generous when you can. It is an investment that pays huge dividends in any organization.
Be generous to your people and you shall be rewarded.
Some of the most impactful gestures of gratitude and appreciation that I have given my people were the least costly—small lunch celebrations, or boxes of favorite chocolates. If you act with kind regard, with generous giving, you are building a strong Kingdom-minded organization while honoring Christ.
Remember: Virtually every single employee will give you 100 percent when they know you care.
Lastly, in relation to this premise, it is important to reflect on this piece of scripture.
1 Timothy 6:17-19: 17“Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”
So why are we sometimes hesitant to share with the very people we should care about the most? We need to be more generous, because in the end we really are left with nothing to take with us.