Monday, February 9, 2009

A letter I didnt write..

To All My Valued Employees,

There have been some rumblings around the office about the future of this company, and more specifically, your job. As you know, the economy has changed for the worse and presents many challenges.

However, the good news is this: The economy doesn't pose a threat to your job. What does threaten your job however, is the changing political landscape in this country.However, let me tell you some little tidbits of fact which might help you decide what is in your best interests.First, while it is easy to spew rhetoric that casts employers against employees, you have to understand that for every business owner there is a back story.

This back story is often neglected and overshadowed by what you see and hear. Sure, you see me park my Mercedes outside. You've seen my big home at last years Christmas party. I'm sure; all these flashy icons of luxury conjure up some idealized thoughts about my life. However, what you don't see is the back story.I started this company 28 years ago. At that time, I lived in a 300 square foot studio apartment for 3 years. My entire living apartment was converted into an office so I could put forth 100% effort into building a company, which by the way, would eventually employ you. My diet consisted of Ramen Pride noodles because every dollar I spent went back into this company. I drove a rusty Toyota Corolla with a defective transmission. I didn't have time to date. Often times, I stayed home on weekends, while my friends went out drinking and partying. In fact, I was married to my business - hard work, discipline, and sacrifice.Meanwhile, my friends got jobs. They worked 40 hours a week and made a modest $50K a year and spent every dime they earned. They drove flashy cars and lived in expensive homes and wore fancy designer clothes. Instead of hitting the Nordstrom's for the latest hot fashion item, I was trolling through the discount store extracting any clothing item that didn't look like it was birthed in the 70's.

My friends refinanced their mortgages and lived a life of luxury. I, however, did not. I put my time, my money, and my life into a business with a vision that eventually, some day, I too, will be able to afford these luxuries my friends supposedly had.So, while you physically arrive at the office at 9am, mentally check in at about noon, and then leave at 5pm, I don't. There is no "off" button for me. When you leave the office, you are done and you have a weekend all to yourself. I unfortunately do not have the freedom. I eat, and breathe this company every minute of the day. There is no rest. There is no weekend. There is no happy hour. Every day this business is attached to my hip like a 1 year old special-needs child. You, of course, only see the fruits of that garden - the nice house, the Mercedes, the vacations ... You never realize the back story and the sacrifices I've made.

Now, the economy is falling apart and I, the guy that made all the right decisions and saved his money, have to bail-out all the people who didn't. The people that overspent their paychecks suddenly feel entitled to the same luxuries that I earned and sacrificed a decade of my life for. Yes, business ownership has is benefits but the price I've paid is steep and not without wounds.

Unfortunately, the cost of running this business, and employing you, is starting to eclipse the threshold of marginal benefit and let me tell you why: I am being taxed to death and the government thinks I don't pay enough. I have state taxes. Federal taxes. Property taxes. Sales and use taxes. Payroll taxes. Workers compensation taxes. Unemployment taxes. Taxes on taxes. I have to hire a tax man to manage all these taxes and then guess what? I have to pay taxes for employing him. Government mandates and regulations and all the accounting that goes with it, now occupy most of my time. On Oct 15Th, I wrote a check to the US Treasury for $288,000 for quarterly taxes.

You know what my "stimulus" check was? Zero. Nada. Zilch.The question I have is this: Who is stimulating the economy? Me, the guy who has provided 14 people good paying jobs and serves over 2,200,000 people per year with a flourishing business? Or, the unmotivated person sitting at home waiting for their next assistance check? Obviously, government feels the latter is the economic stimulus of this country.The fact is, if I deducted (Read: Stole) 50% of your paycheck you'd quit and you wouldn't work here. I mean, why should you? That's nuts. Who wants to get rewarded only 50% of their hard work?

Well, I agree which is why your job is in jeopardy.Here is what many of you don't understand ... to stimulate the economy you need to stimulate what runs the economy. Had suddenly government mandated to me that I didn't need to pay taxes, guess what? Instead of depositing that $288,000 into the Washington black-hole, I would have spent it, hired more employees, and generated substantial economic growth. My employees would have enjoyed the wealth of that tax cut in the form of promotions and better salaries.

But you can forget it now.When you have a comatose man on the verge of death, you don't defibrillate and shock his thumb thinking that will bring him back to life, do you? Or, do you defibrillate his heart? Business is at the heart of America and always has been. To restart it, you must stimulate it, not kill it. Suddenly, the power brokers in Washington believe the poor of America are the essential drivers of the American economic engine. Nothing could be further from the truth and this is the type of change you can keep.

So where am I going with all this? It's quite simple. If any new taxes are levied on me, or my company, my reaction will be swift and simple. I fire you. I fire your co-workers. You can then plead with the government to pay for your mortgage, your SUV, and your child's future. Frankly, it isn't my problem any more. Then, I will close this company and retire. You see, I'm done. I'm done with a country that penalizes the productive and gives to the unproductive. My motivation to work and to provide jobs will be destroyed, and with it, will be my citizenship.

So, if you lose your job, it won't be at the hands of the economy; it will be at the hands of a political hurricane that swept through this country, steamrolled the constitution, and will have changed its landscape forever. If that happens, you can find me sitting on a beach, retired, and with no employees to worry about.

...Signed,
Your boss


(Thank you Curious Sofa........)

18 comments:

Vintage Girl at Heart said...

Amen to that!

jabee said...

Aaaaaaaaaamen!

PLO said...

right on sista.

Cutzi said...

Love this. I read the whole thing and felt every word of it. Well... except the Mercedes and vacation thing...

I think I might print it out and give it to my employees. I'm sure they'd appreciate it. heh heh.

anita said...

i could kiss you...
perfectly stated..absolutely
freakin perfect!

these days seem to be a perfect ex of "be careful what you ask for, you just might get it"

debra said...

All I can say is... AMEN!! Oh, that and WHAT IS WRONG W/THESE DING DONG POLITICIANS in DC??? Do they deposit their brains at the capital steps when the enter??

Millie said...

Yep, happening over here in Australia too. Stimulus packages being introduced here left, right & centre, but apparently when the last one was doled out in Dec ., there was a massive spike in poker machine earnings! We live in interesting times.
Millie ^_^

Honey Bend Vintage said...

I am with you on that~
Bristol

An Accomplished Woman said...

Could I borrow this letter and send it to a few people I know? Just kidding. Thank goodness some of us understand what is really going on! AMEN and Thanks

Linda at Lime in the Coconut! said...

Sing it sister!!! One more voice to add to the many.

From small business owners. Thanks!

Bandon Home said...

May I have permission to copy this and send to all my contacts?

Traceytreasure said...

Love this post!
Love you too!

Hugs!!

Anonymous said...

Terriffic post! This is why my hubby and I are attending the Dave Ramsey Seminars. Protect yourself.
Jo

Kathleen said...

Hi Lisa - I checked out your beach house blog - beautiful job you did there! I'll pray for lots of guest for you.

Martha said...

So true...I hope both sides can come up with something that works for everyone....Meanwhile some those people who've been heading the companies that have been "bailed out" are still getting big bonuses! They've downsized their companies putting many "little people" out of work. People should not be bailed out for running their businesses into the ground and taking crazy salaries and bonuses.
Small business owners should not have to pay for those people's mistakes.

Penny said...

That is really good!!

DJ Norton said...

Thank you for saying what a lot of us small business owners have wanted to say. And we all better start saying it out loud to anyone who will listen or we will all be up a creek without a paddle. Oh wait a minute the Govt. will probably buy us a paddle as long as we paddle the way they want us to paddle.

Anonymous said...

...please where can I buy a unicorn?