Working for a small business might not seem so glamorous to people who want to climb ladders. Reaching “the top” and making millions is sometimes an employee’s only goal. But what large businesses fail to recognize is that employees are just people trying to live, and this small business owner knew that better than anyone.
He had hired me to be the GM of one of his small stores and I had only worked 5 days so far. I bummed a smoke off him and went outside to call my wife. We were stressing because we had no savings left after moving from Alaska to California for the job, and payday wasn’t until another week. My 6-month-old daughter needed formula, and we were trying to ration out the last of our dollars. My truck still needed gas, but maybe we could sell something quickly.
Apparently, my boss had come out to smoke with me and over heard the problem.
Boss didn’t say anything, but later in the day he asked to borrow the truck I’m driving for a delivery since his wife had theirs. I told him I didn’t have any gas, so he said he’d put in what he used.
When he brought the truck back, there were 5 of the large containers of formula on the back seat, a full tank of gas, and $500 on the center console. He told me to consider it a hiring bonus and if it wasn’t enough, to tell him and he’d take care of it. He said that as long as I worked for him, that offer stood.
First time working for a small privately owned company and I absolutely am floored by this. He had 10 employees, but he treated us all like family.
Big businesses can’t and won’t do things like this for their employees. If the business has a good quarter, the employees don’t see a bonus. They don’t get advanced paychecks or help when they need it. Small businesses are able to transform into a way of life that larger corporations just won’t do. If business is good, everyone benefits…not just the CEO’s at the top.
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