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Your Coworkers’ Salaries

2 Aug

Ever wonder how much your coworkers make? (Or even your boss?)

Of course you do. It’s only natural that this thought has entered your mind.

Well, Boulder, Colorado based Namaste Solar, a solar panel installation company, allows employees to know what each other makes. 

Can you imagine your coworkers knowing how much you make? Personally it gives me the willies. 

Also at Namaste no employees’ salary is allowed to be four times more than anyone else’s.


Did you know that non-profit organizations, government agencies and publicly traded companies all have to share the compensation levels of at least some of their employees? 

When I worked at a school as an Executive Assistant to the Executive Big-Shot Guy I got to peep the entire facility’s salaries–except his–which was mysteriously not listed, and let me tell you, that salary knowledge was a big deal. The other employees I ate lunch with were always hinting to find out just who made what, especially their own bosses. There were times I slightly feared they were plotting to club me over the head with a batch of files, ducktape my mouth and take me to nearby woods until I coughed up the goods.

Obviously salary transparency is not only a big deal but a sticky subject.

At salaries can be posted anonymously by employees, etc.

The flip side of the coin was that knowing what certain people earned, especially Directors and Supervisors, made me eyeball them from scalp to polished loafer. Like the goofy Director guy who always found time to joke with every employee, twiddle his thumbs in his office and ask me for snacks from my own personal stash in my desk…He made $75,000 per year. Plus bonuses.

Can you imagine the nostril flaring that took place when he used his balls to ask me for, say, candy or peanut butter crackers? Meanwhile I was making a whole $30k/year before taxes. And doing HIS paperwork.  Sure, I’ll feed you snacks while making a FRACTION of your salary WHILE simultaneously making you look good to the organization.

Oy to the mountaintops.  That guy rattled my innermost fibers.

Salary disclosure has always been a weird subject. When I was in my 20’s and fresh out of college I knew what all of my newly full-time employed friends were making and they knew what I was making. Then as time went on suddenly it’s confidential what everyone is earning. These are people I’ve known for years. But for some reason no one will discuss their salary anymore. (I wonder if this comes with age.)

Some workers think that if pay scales were fair, based precisely on skill set, education and years of experience, then there should be no “secrets.”  Hmph. We all know that upper-level management at most jobs earn more than they’re worth.

I mean, I’ve been an Administrative Assistant for years and have seen countless executives of various levels lounging in their offices daily while picking lint from beneath their fingernails and Googling Jaquar styles after taking three-hour lunches (that the company paid for).

Whoops. Now my nostrils are flaring.


Minimum Wage Is Indeed Minimum

7 Jun
The minimum wage for the area of the country I live in (Washington, D.C. metro area) is $7.25 an hour. Yet Georgia & Wyoming are–sit down now–$5.15 an hour!
That’s, like, barely enough to buy crap at the dollar store.
That’s not, like, enough to pay your
CAR STUFF (gas, insurance, repairs & maintenance)
FOOD (unless you like eating dollar store crap)
CABLE (I know it’s a luxury; but it can be a necessity if it provides escapism).
Whenever I peruse the housing ads posted locally in this high rent area (even ugly basement rooms for rent right next to someone’s noisy, leaky, energy inefficient water heater), I can’t help but wonder how people making anywhere near minimum wage are making ends meet. Do they live with parents, friends, have several roommates? How in the WORLD can anyone survive in a metropolis earning the likes of $7.25 an hour before taxes no less.
Well, the state of Washington has the highest national minimum wage pay at $9.04 an hour followed by Vermont at $8.46 an hour.
To see the NATIONAL (all 50 states) minimum wage amounts, click here.
Actually Wiki has it broken down more clearly.
This is the precise reason I juggle, as in discover as many avenues possible to earn a living, not only now but for the future. Side hustles. Pop-up businesses, however mini. Multiple streams of income. I would never rely on mere jobs to float me anymore. I’ve been sidelined too many times by low pay, sudden job loss, burnout and looooooong job searches.
For those making peanuts and raisins, KEEP PUSHING…Macadamias are just around the corner.

Paycheck Breakdown Pie Chart Hideousness

9 Dec

I do this all the time at work…Forget to add a title to an Excel chart so the chart appears on the overhead projector screen with CHART TITLE written across the top. I can be such a distracted loser sometimes. Nothing like sitting in a conference room in itchy nylons with a group of executives looking at you as if you’re a dunce head.

This is a mock pie chart of how a lowly office professional’s salary could be broken down:


I’m technically challenged and have no idea how to post this picture larger than it appears.

“Please Include Salary Requirement”–Or Else

24 Sep

Searching for a new job is a job. Not to mention how annoying it is when they ask for your salary requirement. Or when they threaten you with “All resumes failing to include salary requirement will be disqualified for consideration.”


See, the thing about asking for your salary requirement is, it’s a SET-UP.

Don’t fall for it.

If you’re applying for a job that is willing to pay you $48,000 per year but you put your salary requirement at $42,000 per year…Do you really think they’ll pay you $48,000?

As mentioned before they’re Goons.

So there you are sitting there in your beige colored partition working for $6,000 less per year but you’re still expected to perform at $48k per year. The best thing to do in a case of shanghai is to pretend you’re ok with lowballing your own self. I mean, what’s $6,000 per year anyway? After taxes it’s not even that much.

Just trying to make you feel better. 

I’m here for you. I’ve been in nearly every imaginable salary hole.

Me no likey employer set-ups.

Goony Goons

29 Aug

Are you sitting down? Is your boss near? You may want to have a drink of water before reading this:

Chief executives at 299 U.S. companies took home a combined $3.4 billion in 2010, enough to employ more than 102,000 workers, the labor group AFL-CIO said in study released in April.

They’re goons. Robbers. Thieves hovering over us.

They’re bandits. They’re shafters.

Get. Out. Now.

Find a way to do what you love. You cannot remain in that cubicle stance for the next 25 years. You just can’t.


Paycheck 2 Paycheck

6 Aug

The working poor. That’s what workers living on the edge of their paychecks are labeled.

Most of my entire working life I lived paycheck to paycheck. Except for when I’d managed to save serious loot. Like the time I saved $10,000 while making a mere $30K salary at a trade association in Alexandria, Va.  I hated that job. Really hated it. I would get depressed on Sunday nights I hated it so much.

I would eat crap from the vending machine I hated it so much. Half bags of AIR for 85 cents.

I smoked cigarettes while working there, too.

Many, many cigarettes.

I’m convinced there are ions of people who smoke cigarettes because of their loathesome dead-end jobs.

Seven out of 10 people in the U.S. live paycheck to paycheck.

No wonder there are so many miserable workers. And smokers.