Salary versus Commission


Have you ever noticed that the hardest working people seem to be either self-employed or working on a commission?  These folks have learned that very simple truth that a lack of productivity means a lack of income.  What would happen to the productivity of our workforce if we changed everyone to a commission status?

I posed this question to a friend of mine that is an HR Director, and she laughed out loud.  She said, “think of all the money we would save if we only paid productive people!”

As we talked, we determined that unemployment would go down because we could afford to employ more people.  Heck, since payroll would drop if we are only paying productive people, the company could save a ton of expense each month.

Yet, what would happen once people caught on to the concept of getting paid when they actually work?  Hum, would we see an increase in personal productivity and workflow?  Oh my, we just might witness a first hand economic recovery never before seen!

I saw this process first hand this week when I witnessed trees being trimmed down our street this year.  In past years the county has come out and blocked the street for a week to trim and remove tree branches.  They started about 10:00am everyday and end around 3:00pm.  The process will last 4-5 days.

This year, the county decided to outsource the work to a local tree services.  They arrived yesterday morning at 9:00am, and by 4:30pm they were completely finished, in ONE DAY!

The neighborhood was all commenting about how quickly the work was done, that there were fewer people working, but that they were actually working!!!!  We as tax payers got our money’s worth because we paid people for a job well done.

I know this idea is far-fetched, and the lobby of people who want a salary no matter what they accomplish all day is a very large majority, but my hope is that it inspires a few leaders to ask why they pay people every week that are not returning on that investment?

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