Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Partying down

I remember when I had a “real” job. One year, they were feeling poor and instead of setting the Christmas Party in the Mayflower Hotel ballroom, they threw it in our same older conference room where we had slept through a zillion meetings.

Instead of bonuses—they gave gift certificates to the local Safeway, which were immediately dubbed “food stamps.”

Jeez—Ever heard of MORALE!? One year, I had gotten a $2,500 bonus and believe me when I tell you that was better.

Jonnelle Marte (WSJ, Dec 1, 2009) says many small business owners are getting creative this season, instead of just chintzy.

At Proforma Worldwide Support Center in Cleveland, execs are scraping snow off all 100 employees’ cars at least once a month in lieu of bonuses. They are also rotating use of the closest parking space.

Only 31% of business owners plan year-end bonuses, down from 44% last year.

Only 16% are giving raises—last year, it was twice that.

Some companies are also cutting back on client gifts. One branding company collected a bunch of the little gifts they got from clients and regifted.

One magazine even let advertisers have a free ad.

As for the party—some small businesses in New Jersey ganged up with other small cos and threw a joint party. Saved 25%!

And another plus? It’s not the same old people you see everyday! AND—if you drink a few extras, maybe you won’t see the person you tried to hit on the next day.

Now that’s a bonus!

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