Do Businesses Care About Their Employees Anymore?

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This is a post that has been ruminating in my mind since starting my Taking the Plunge series a few months ago. If you’re not up to speed on my situation then I encourage you to check them out. My desire is to be as objective as I can without allowing my prejudices shadow my thoughts. That said, the idea of whether or not businesses care about their employees has been something I’ve thought over for the last number of years. I saw entire teams be “down-sized” only to have the CEO be given a pay bump the following week and I saw functions be shipped overseas to save a few bucks yet have the process be severely impacted. I know that I am not unique in this experience as many have seen this same scenario play out at their workplaces over the last decade, if not longer. Seeing as I am an inquisitive person by nature that has given birth to some thoughts in my mind as I look at the corporate landscape we now see ourselves in.

A Conversation Over Christmas


This past Christmas we had the pleasure of hosting my Dad’s side of the family to visit and stay with us. To know my family is to know that it’s an opinionated bunch and, to be fair, what family is not? My Dad is a baby boomer who works harder than any person that I have ever seen. Many men 1/3 his age would buckle under what he is able to do. My brothers, on the other hand, are Gen Y’ers and see life from a much different angle. This can generally lead to some interesting discussions and Christmas was no different. My Dad made a statement that businesses no longer care about their employees and my brothers came back with saying that businesses never cared for their employees and that to expect anything different is short sighted at best. To be fair, I think they both had valid points and I found myself, as usual, in the middle trying to keep peace and help them see the other’s point of view. I think the underlying current was the shift we have seen in today’s culture and coming to grips with the fact that things have changed. The challenge before us is acknowledging this change and being, at some level, comfortable with it.

Finding the Middle Ground


At the end of the day I am not exactly certain on which side of the argument I fall. My Dad was coming from the stand point that in his day you would start at a company, work there for 30 or 40 years and retire with a nice pension and get a gold watch. For various reasons, that is no longer the norm. With those things comes cost and ultimately a company might feel that they can’t stay competitive if they assume those costs. This has resulted in generally shifting more expenses to the employee from 401ks that put more of the responsibility on the employee to the employee being responsible for a greater share of the medical benefits. This is also not to mention the fact that many companies significantly downsized their workforce over the last few years and continue not to hire in today’s climate.

What this has helped create is the age of the freelancer as suggested in this piece from CNN last year. More and more individuals are either being forced out of their jobs or simply not being challenged/rewarded in their current jobs and are jumping into freelancing or running their own business. I see the appeal as we have done it ourselves and know many others have done so as well. I also think that there is a generational aspect in this and my father ceded that point during our discussion. People I speak with who are my age or younger have a much greater comfort level with self employment than my father’s generation. Self employment has many wonderful qualities. It helps inspire increased entrepreneurship as well as inspire ideas that can further us as a people. The downside to all of this, is that it pushes so much of the cost and responsibility for many things we either need or take for granted onto the individual.

My point in all of this, is that I believe that we’re continuing to see a shift in our culture in terms of what is expected of us as employees and also that many are choosing to go out on their own. Whether this be because they were spit out of a massive firm that’s sitting on a pile of cash but does not want to spend their money on employees, because they’re wanting more freedom, or simply want to build multiple income streams the shift is still ongoing.

What Does the Future Hold?


Like I said at the beginning, I am wanting to be objective in my thoughts. Not to share some personal background would not be fair to myself though. The company I was at is a massive firm that was sitting, at the time, on a cash pile of $1.7 Billion and that’s just the cash they were sitting on. They regularly tried to get blood out of a turnip and gave bonuses to the powers that be while at the same time telling the worker bees that “times were tough” and to be thankful that we had a job. I was thankful to have a job, but at the end of the day the hypocrisy was so thick you could cut it. I don’t share this to get sympathy; I had it very well and enjoyed many of the benefits my family received. The point is, is that many people are in this situation, if not worse. For many this has meant that they’re going to look for other ways to make ends meet and improve their lot in life.

Where we are going as a society, I do not pretend to know, but I think we will continue to see a growth in the freelancing industry as well as more small businesses popping up. I believe that the current corporate culture has definitely had a hand in this and will continue to do so. I also believe that there is a powerful generational aspect intertwined in this that will continue to play out. Many in my generation are no longer satisfied by staying at the same firm, but want to make a difference in this world and I whole-heartedly support that desire and believe it’s one that we need to continue to encourage. Just look at some of the companies we have around today that started with next to nothing and had a vision… Apple, Starbucks, and Whole Foods are just a few that come to mind. Mind you these are the exceptions to the rule, but point to the fact that that the sky is the limit and that thinking outside the box can be a good thing. I, for one, am thankful that my wife and I did and are not turning back, but living in the freedom that we have been able to create for ourselves.


What are your thoughts? Do you think businesses care about their employees anymore or is this all ado about nothing?


Photo courtesy of: Larry Weaver

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John is the founder of Frugal Rules, a dad, husband and veteran of the financial services industry whose writing has been featured in Forbes, CNBC, Yahoo Finance and more.

Passionate about helping people learn from his mistakes, John shares financial tools and tips to help you enjoy the freedom that comes from living frugally. One of his favorite tools is Personal Capital , which he used to plan for retirement and keep track of his finances in less than 15 minutes each month.

Another one of John's passions is helping people save $80 per month by axing their expensive cable subscriptions and replacing them with more affordable ones, like Hulu with Live TV.


  • Margaret Polino Nicholas says:

    I worked at an establishment that did care when we were small and no subsidiary’s. over time as we grew it was just like you explained, no more caring and big bonus for officers and employees told we had to cut back. I speak on good authority as I retired CFO.

    • John says:

      Unfortunately, I think that is generally the case as a firm grows in size. The bottom line becomes too much of a driver to the powers that be and it impacts those that support them.

  • Jon @ MoneySmartGuides says:

    This is a tough one. I’ve worked for a company where generally, I would say they cared about their employees. But then 2008 hit and they laid people off. So because of this, do they not care about their employees? I follow the logic of our parents generations working for the same company 30-40 years and retiring, but I don’t think that is 100% valid today. We are much more mobile today. It doesn’t take a lot for us to leave one employer for another. Heck, I have head hunters and the like contact me to see if I would be interested in joining another firm. Yes some of these are scams, but many are from reputable companies. So just because an employee stays or doesn’t stay with an employer for 30-40 years doesn’t mean that the employer cared about their employees.

    • John says:

      Great point Jon! I agree that just because someone stays at a firm for their entire career that it doesn’t mean they’re cared for necessarily. It could be a many number of factors, though I could see how someone could think the company “cared” for them. I also agree that we have become much more mobile which has a great impact on this situation as well.

  • DC @ Young Adult Money says:

    I think, especially when we are talking about large companies, they care to the extent that you are making them a profit. If you they can cut you and hire someone who will perform at the same level, it’s inevitable that you will be transitioned out. It’s simply the reality of our economy. It happens in small businesses, too, but I think they are more likely to have a personal connection and genuinely care about their employees.

    • John says:

      I completely agree DC! I think that the bottom line is the ultimate driver for many larger firms today. I think many feel that they’re ultimately replaceable which only lends to the feeling that they’re not cared about. I think the small business aspect can make it a bit different, but they still need to make money and can also lead to this mentality. That said, I would take the small business employ any day over working at a large firm anymore.

      • Snoglydox says:

        I believe smaller companies or start-ups are likely an owners “baby,” and he/she wants their “baby” to make a name for itself; corporations will sell or break up a company if it will get it the short term gain it needs to satisfy the bottom line. In other words, small companies want quality (thinkers) people to help the companies grow, where corporations want people who “don’t think.”

  • Laurie @thefrugalfarmer says:

    Great post, John. I think there are still a few gems out there, but by and large, it seems that most companies are concerned about the bottom line and the top layer than they are about the little guy. And middle management is stuck in the middle, trying desperately to preserve their own jobs even if it means paying their subordinates squat. Society in general, to me at least, seems to have gotten more selfish over the last decade or two. Years ago, when I worked as a bank teller, our manager told us in no uncertain terms that our first and foremost goal was to make sure our customers were happy. She may or may not have had selfish goals with that rule, but our customers were happy, business was good, and we as employees were rewarded for success. That, however, seems to be a dying practice. No wonder people are willing to take the risk of heading out on their own.

    • John says:

      Thanks Laurie! That is exactly what I was thinking as I was writing this. The few in power are looking out for themselves and the “worker bees” are left thinking they’re on thin ice in terms of keeping their jobs. I have no problem at all with a firm making money, that’s their job, but I think there can be a balance between that and caring for your employees. That said, I think that level of basic care is a dying breed in corporate America today.

  • Money Bulldog says:

    I think that the majority of companies only care about the bottom line and especially with all the job cuts going on in the UK at the moment, it often leads to an extra burden being placed on the remaining employees. Those few gems that Laurie mentioned, those that do care, seem to prosper just as much if not more than the others so I think there’s a lesson to be learned from that.

    • John says:

      That’s a great point Adam! I was at a small, family run business in 2008 during the recession. They had to make some cutbacks, but no layoffs and you could tell that it pained them to do so. The thing is though that the employees worked even harder because they wanted to help the company and actually enjoyed their jobs. That same company has grown like crazy the last few years and many of the employees are happy to be there.

  • My Financial Independence Journey says:

    I think my company generally cares about its employees. That being said, if the financials go South, we’ll probably start getting hit with rounds of layoffs. As an overall macro trend, I imagine employment shrinking. There’s simply too much pressure to increase efficiency by hiring freelancers on an as needed basis, moving jobs overseas (at least until those become too expensive), and replacing people with computers.

    • John says:

      I think that’s the case among many companies MFIJ. They see the bottom line when things go south and they want to protect against it and will do what’s necessary to increase that efficiency.

  • pauline says:

    I don’t think anyone cares about their employees. Super “cool” companies like Google and FB with happy hours and play rooms just care that people put in long hours and stick around for a while because it costs more to replace them. There is no free lunch.

    • John says:

      That’s a great point Pauline, many of those companies like Google do expect crazy insane hours and offer the nicer perks to keep employees happy. At least they offer those perks though and many today do not and still expect to get more blood out of a turnip.

  • Glen @ Monster Piggy Bank says:

    The smaller the business the more likely they are to care about their employees. I think it is because they are relied upon so much more than in a big company where everyone is replaceable.

    • John says:

      I would agree Glen, the smaller companies do tend to give off that feel more often. I think it points back to a more personal connection as opposed to a big multi-leveled firm.

  • Alan@escapingmydebt says:

    Hi John,
    Great article and question. This is a tough one. The company I work for is a non-profit with a very large endowment. When I first began working here the increases were nice even with a down market and the benefits were plentiful and cheap or free depending on what you had. Since the president stepped down to go back to his lab full time, we have had another person come in. Tough times were mentioned as heads began to roll. Instead of giving the employees a chance to stay under the re-organization of their own dept. Anyways, the new president immediately hires a CEO which we have never had before. With salary, bonuses and all other little perks, the position is costing the company close to $1 million. Not to mention, this is the first president to stay at the housing on site which costs us more money, plus renovations galore for his personal use. But when it comes time for increases, nothing or bare minimum. On top of that they have been increasing our benefit costs. This year our endowment is at its highest level in years so I am curious to see how they plan on rewarding us, if they do.

    • John says:

      Thanks Alan! Sorry to hear about that, it’s just proof that no company or outfit is immune to things like this happening. It always saddens me to read stories like this. I hope they end up rewarding you once that time comes.

  • Mrs. 1500 says:

    So many thoughts swirling in my head with this post. At the title, my first thought was no, they don’t. But as I read, I thought back to the companies I have worked at.

    One sponsored Beer Friday, where around 2:00 on Friday afternoon, they would go out and buy about 9 cases of beer, for the employees to enjoy one or two and unwind at the end of the week. From a liability perspective, this has the potential to be a nightmare, and I cannot believe this practice exists in today’s litigious society. This same company also paid a massive portion of our health care costs: for Mr. 1500 and I, the monthly bill was only $99 for a BCBS PPO plan.

    The next company gave Christmas gifts out of the returned and broken stash of products. There was a push to do everything faster and more accurately, but the entire 4 years I was there, there were no bonuses, no raises, and we were repeatedly told to be happy we had a job.

    I think a lot of it has to do with Wall Street, too. Publicly held companies are being pushed to be more profitable, and the easiest way to do that is to cut expenses, the largest of which are employee related like salary and benefits. Even when that happens, and profits are through the roof, sometimes it is not enough. See Apple. They have huge sales every month, top estimates and their stock price has dropped something like 40% in the last 6 months for no reason.

    Thanks for a great post, John. You got my brain working early on a Monday.

    • John says:

      Thanks Mrs. 1500! I am glad that I was able to get your mental juices firing on a Monday morning, that was my hope and plan. 🙂

      I think it does vary widely on where you work and the attitude of management there. I believe you hit a chord with the AAPL point…that is a great observation! They’re hitting it out of the ballpark and we as investors yawn at what they’re doing. That has ripple effects that is felt long down the chain. I know that publicly traded firms are meant and need to return profit to us as shareholders, but at what expense?

      There are some companies out there that do still care, but I believe that they’re much more difficult to find in today’s climate.

  • Holly@ClubThrifty says:

    I work for a small business with only 6 full time employees. Greg and I are 2 of those!

    I do feel that they care about us more than a big corporation would…BUT I also see a lot of rationalization. “Times are tough” blah blah blah then they make huge unnecessary expenses. I don’t really care that much as long as I keep receiving my benefits and getting paid. I just take it all with a grain of salt.

    • John says:

      I agree Holly, I’ve seen that rationalization and I understand if they’re actually true. When I was in past jobs I felt the same way that as long as they continued to provide my benefits and would reward me for my hard work then I was generally fine and would just look the other way.

  • William @ Bite the Bullet says:

    Great article. If you ever watch Undercover Boss, you see every week how Big Bonus bosses have their eyes opened to the troopers who work for them. Fewer corporations than ever seem to care for their employees.

    On the other hand, the move to freelancers is a good thing IMHO, because it takes us back to how the human race operated before the industrial revolution: we had the butcher, smith, farmer and general store owner who all lived where they worked and operated their independent businesses without “a job” or commuting. Amazing how those concepts (big company, a job, etc.) have become so accepted as the norm when, out of more than 6,000 years of recorded human history, that way of life is less than 200 years old.

    Technology created “the job” but now technology is enabling us to go back to our roots.

    • John says:

      Thanks William and great points! I’ve seen a few episodes of that show and always thought they were a bit on the comical side. I agree that fewer employers are caring about their employees and it’ll be interesting to see how far that goes.

  • Kim@Eyesonthedollar says:

    I think most businesses are looking at the bottom line. If you make them money, they care about you. If not, they don’t. I also think there is little in the way of loyalty from employers and employees. Employers are always looking to save costs, even at the expense of employees. Employees are always looking for something better and will jump ship if they find it. I believe some small businesses do probably care more about their employees because you get to know them better, but for the most part, everyone is looking out for themselves. That sounded really cynical, didn’t it?

    • John says:

      I don’t know if it’s cynical or not Kim, but I do think it has become much more of an I am going to look out for myself society in terms of work at least. I think it’s a give and take relationship and ultimately both parties need to do what’s best for them.

  • My Money Design says:

    Great post and certainly a great discussion topic to be shared around the table at Christmas. I have always came from the school of thought that says an employer doesn’t owe you a damn thing. They can fire you whenever they want and be on to the next person as soon as that. But in the same regard, you can pick up and leave for something better anytime you want to. So even though we talk about how fulfilling our jobs are, how they try to do more for their employees, etc. – at the end of the day, there is always a line in the sand that says at some point we are going to part ways. As companies become more like faceless corporations that get bought out by private equity or other ventures, I think its hard to believe that anyone is going to take care of you for the next 30 years. You are always on your own, and the sooner you start taking care of yourself, the better.

    • John says:

      Thanks MMD! I think part of the issue (in the discussion) was that it was unheard of 40 years ago to leave and try to strike out on your own. I mean, with a pension and things like that why would anyone want to leave? I think it’s become much more of a transaction based culture today and you do need to look out for yourself, because many firms will certainly not do it for you.

  • Grayson @ Debt RoundUp says:

    I think it comes down to the company. Most large companies, especially publicly traded ones are all driven by profits. You have to work harder and become more lean. Employees are just numbers to the large companies. Smaller companies and ones like I work for treat their employees with respect and reward them for good work. I think that is becoming less and less these days as more places are giving the heads more money to become more profitable.

    • John says:

      I would agree Grayson that it does depend on the company, though fewer and fewer companies do offer that culture you describe. At the end of the day many are looking to become as profitable as possible.

  • The College Investor says:

    I think businesses care about their employees to the extent they have to in order to make a profit. For example, businesses have an incentive to keep their employees safe (accidents cost money and productivity). Businesses also have an incentive to offer perks to get good talent (competition).

    However, there is a changing dynamic, especially when it comes to pay and benefits. Remember, since employers only have to do what they have to, with the Great Recession an now Obamacare, many employers have cut pay and hours, and reduced health care benefits. Why? Because they are able to do so while still attracting talented individuals.

    For the worker it sucks. For the employer, it’s profitable.

    • John says:

      All great points Robert, and I agree that firms do care as much as it impacts the bottom line. You bring up a great point about the shifting dynamic. These are some interesting times and it’ll be interesting to see where we go over the next 5-10 years.

  • Midlife Finance says:

    I believe 99% of the companies out there only care about the employee as long as they improve the bottom line. This is a big part of why I don’t want to work for corporate America anymore. The employees are at the bottom of the totem pole. The execs’ main concern is to enrich themselves. I guess they put the share holders next, but that’s just because the execs have a ton of stocks too.
    Employees are just cogs in the wheel. Everyone is replaceable/interchangeable.

    • John says:

      I totally agree. It’s a big part of the reason why I left as well and enjoy being away from it. Great point on the interchangeableness, few people are irreplaceable at many firms today.

  • Kurt @ Money Counselor says:

    To the extent employees affect the bottom line, businesses care about their employees. Do they care about them as human beings? No–never have and never will. You’ll do much better in the business world if you accept this fact going in and reciprocate–you care about the business only to the extent it affects your bottom line. It’s a trade-off in the end: You trade your talents, skills, and time for cash. Expect anything more and you’ll eventually be disappointed.

    • John says:

      I would tend to agree Kurt. It has become much more of a transaction based environment, in my opinion at least. Having that mindset will make things much easier for you in the long run I think.

  • Mackenzie says:

    Interesting post John. I think companies for the most part, just care about the almighty dollar and that’s it. I worked for a company once, that in one week, employees were laid off and a very “high up” manager, rolled into work in a brand new Mercedes. Unfortuantely, this kind of thing happens all the time.

  • Girl Meets Debt says:

    I use to work for a multi-million dollar bank and felt no love there. I now work for a much smaller company where the CEO actually knows all his employees and the treatment I get at my current job is like night and day.

    • John says:

      I have had that experience as well and I completely agree. Being a number at a company does leave a lot to be desired.

  • John @ Fearless Men says:

    I think the bottom line is that companies and firms exist to make a profit. After this they realize that employees are more productive when they feel appreciated and cared for. This is why the emplolyer will then act like they care. But when things get tough they have to start cutting.

    I agree that freelancing will increase but then the pendulum will eventually swing back to corporations. I think the majority like the comfort of working somewhere and not having to deal with the extra costs and responsiblities like insurance.

    I personally don’t see a huge benefit to sticking at one place for long anymore because as long as I keep myself competitive I’ll be compensated better by moving. The 401k switch also changed things because it can move with you. I think corporations are starting to realize that pensions worked better for them. Employees were more loyal and stuck around back then because both had some skin in the game.

    • John says:

      I agree John that firms do ultimately care about the bottom line and for that I really can’t fault them…to a certain point. We are much more portable today and that can work to our benefit. That said, I am not too certain that it will swing back to firms as I think we’re in a shifting/changing climate. If the parameters of things like Obamacare stick around then I think a good number of employers will drop insurance coverage for their employees. Once that happens it’s a whole new ballgame.

  • Shannon Ryan @ The Heavy Purse says:

    I worked in Corporate America for many years and left to run my own financial planning practice, which is a franchise of the same corporation. So there is a part of me, a huge part of me, that wants to believe Corporations care about their employees. But honestly, the bottom line is what matters most and to a degree – if they are a publicly traded company – we do share part of the blame for that. As stockholders, we demand dividends, quarterly growth and rising stock prices. As employees, we despair when we see jobs being lost but CEOs earning huge salaries and bonuses. It’s a bit of a mess. I do believe there are lots of individual leaders that care about their employees at Corporations because I was one of them. I also lost my team when they decided to make cutbacks. I bet you can guess when I decided to return to private practice.

    • John says:

      Thanks for your insight Shannon! I would agree that there are individual leaders/managers that do care and it was always refreshing to work for them. I would agree that we do demand those things as shareholders and many do not see that.

  • Nick @ says:

    Some businesses still care. I would say that a lot of them have lost that aspect, but if that is something that is important to you I think you can still find companies that haven’t. An equally important question in my opinion is “do employees care about their employers anymore?”.

    • John says:

      I would agree Nick, that there are some out there, though it’s much tougher to find them today…from my experience at least. You bring up a great point with your question, one that definitely warrants discussion.

  • John says:

    That’s definitely a valid point Michael. It was the same way at my final employer and ultimately was the reason why I left. At the end of the day I saw no reason to stay as the writing was on the wall.

  • Melinda Gonzalez says:

    Hehe, I think it’s great your family is opinionated. It’s great to get fired up, and still love each other at the end of the day.

    I do think times are changing, and the newer generation is much more flexible than previous ones (not a bad thing, it’s just life).

    I think change is always good, and the world is going in another direction at the moment. We are going more towards self employment if you want satisfaction in your career. Like any change, it will probably be painful in the transition as people realize companies really don’t care. However, once everyone gets past that and takes action, a lot of good can come from it.

    I think it is the up and coming generations that are going to be the game changers. I see it everyday as the younger folks refuse to do things that are pointless and make no sense. I know managers hate it, but I honestly think it’s a positive.

    • John says:

      I would agree Melinda that the younger generations are more flexible and I think maybe a little more open to change. Great point on the younger and yet to be born generations are going to be game changers. It’ll be interesting, to say the least, to see what the corporate landscape will look like over the next 20-25 years.

  • Edward Antrobus says:

    While employer-employee loyalty has gone down, it hasn’t gone away. At the job I had in NJ before moving, my boss assured me that I would always have a job there as long as I needed it. That meant that I kept working full time through the winter when he could have gotten away with bumping me down to part-time or laying me off altogether.

    • John says:

      I would agree that it’s not gone away, but has become increasingly rare today. Stories like yours, while awesome, are much more the exception today in my opinion.

  • Tony@WeOnlyDoThisOnce says:

    Very interesting difference of perspectives. Great post!

  • cashrebel says:

    I currently work at an old school style company. They take care of their employees and the average tenure is around 18noon years. Its such an odd juxtaposition to whet I hear from everyone else. That being said, I try to always think like my job might be eliminated tomorrow. That way ill ne ready to jump on my next great opportunity

    • John says:

      That definitely sounds like your at a company that is a little further away from the norm that others. Having that mentality, while unfortunate, is one that I think many realistically need to have in the current climate.

  • Budget & the Beach says:

    Maybe small companies do, but I think big corporations don’t, and maybe even slightly smaller companies. I think you as an employee need to look out for yourself, but show respect when you are working somewhere. Just keep that resume updated and keep saving money and networking.

    • John says:

      I would tend to agree Tonya. At most larger firms it’s really difficult to find that real appreciation and that goes a long way. Great point about keeping that resume updated and networking.

  • Lance @ Money Life and More says:

    I’ve worked for big companies and small companies but all in accounting so I see the numbers side of companies. Of course, I’ve only known the down times since I’ve graduated but I wouldn’t be surprised if companies stick to the ways of the last few years.

    • John says:

      I bet it would be interesting to see it from the numbers side Lance. I think you’re right in that I believe many will continue to stick to the same policies.

  • Alexa says:

    In my experiences, no, businesses do not care about their employees, or at least they can’t afford to fairly compensate and provide benefits for them. It’s hard for small businesses to give perks and rewards to good employees when they are barely keeping their own heads above water. This is why freelancing looks a lot more promising to me.

    • John says:

      I agree that for many small businesses they can’t afford many benefits, but I think it largely depends on the size of the business if they’re able to provide anything substantive.

      • dave says:

        I do not care how small a business is,there are things employers can do for loyal,productive workers that show they are valued. Give them a decent wage so they will not have to apply for food stamps. Do not make them beg for a raise if they have earned it. Give it as a reward for their loyalty. Do not be greedy close up shop on holidays so your people can spend time with family like everyone else(especially retailers) Knock off this myt of ‘mandarory overtime. Overtime is,and always has been voluntary. Stop calling your employees “the help”

  • Justin@TheFrugalPath says:

    Speaking for large companies, I do not believe they care about employees. The most important thing is the bottom line, which in some ways it should be. Benefits and a good salary are means to recruit the best people. They’re not given because a company wants to be nice.
    For smaller companies, it’s different. There are some owners who lean one way and then others who go 180 in the other direction.
    My employers say they care about employees. However, their action and money speak otherwise.
    This is one reason I’d like to take the plunge myself.

    • John says:

      Great points Justin! I think the good companies are the ones who actually stand up for what they say and actually are true to their word. Those firms are few and far between these days which is part of the reason why we took the plunge.

  • Jordann @ My Alternate Life says:

    Unfortunately I agree that most businesses are more concerned about keeping their share prices rising than taking care of their employees. I’m lucky enough to work for a privately held business. The owner of the company has been known to not take a salary so that he can pay his employees when times are tough. Sure, he can’t afford to offer us retirement matches and we get paid less than we might at a bigger company elsewhere, but knowing that he does whatever he can to treat us fairly goes a long way.

    • John says:

      That’s great Jordann! Those kind of business owners are far and few between. The benefits may not always be the best, but you know that they’re looking out for you.

  • Financial Samurai says:

    I say they care, but they just care LESS. The environment is much more fast moving and competitive now. A business must adapt, cut costs, be more nimble and be ruthless.

    Look out for yourself!

    • John says:

      Great point Sam, we do need to look out for ourselves in today’s climate. If we don’t, then it’s highly likely we’ll get passed on by.

  • Mandy @ MoneyMasterMom says:

    I think back in the day when the baby boomers started their careers that companies did care about their employees, and employees rewarded their employers with fierce loyalty. Then somewhere along the line employers started asking employees to do more for less, and employees started to look for ways to milk their employers. (like helping themselves to office stationary or using every last cent in their health benefit fund.) This started a cycle that continues to strain the employer employee relationship. Now we’re in a situation that employees are just a resource used for making money, and employers are viewed as a necessary evil in order to earn a paycheque

    • John says:

      I would tend to agree Mandy. I think your comment points to the increased transactional nature between the two parties.

  • Brick By Brick Investing | Marvin says:

    I believe some companies have gotten far too big and as a result view their employees as nothing more than expenses. It’s basic psychology in my opinion, if you don’t see the results of your decisions you’re less likely to develop a bond with your employees. I personally believe that small business is where you want to be, the larger you get the less likely you are to care about your employees, co workers, or boss.

    • John says:

      Great point Marvin! I would tend to agree that many firms have just become too ginormous that people are viewed as nothing more than a cost. I know employees cost money, but there is a fine line I think of how far you take that. If I had to choose I would choose working at a small business every time.

  • Jaime says:

    I agree with you 100%. That’s why we’re starting to see more FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early) blogs coming up.

    We’re seeing people switch to tiny houses, minimalism, freelancing, etc.

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