I am constantly amazed at what little respect employers and co-workers have for other people’s paychecks.
A morning phone call with my husband reminded me of how frequently this problem comes up in the workplace. He is a subcontractor and bills for his work on a daily basis. The person in charge of processing that billing is consistently dismissive about any problems that come up.
“Oh, it will probably be fine.”
“If there’s a problem, we’ll just resubmit the invoice and you’ll get paid for it next time.”
“What’s the big deal? It will get taken care of eventually.”
Statements like this make my normally mild mannered husband fume, and understandably so. After all, the reason he shows up to work every day is to get paid. It’s kind of a big deal in our household. And while his monthly bills aren’t his co-worker’s concern, presumably she has personal experience with the expectation of being paid properly and on time.
I’ve had encounters with this lackadaisical attitude about my own paychecks in the past. I’ve been treated like a pain for double-checking commission invoices or inquiring about a check that hasn’t shown up in the mail. I’ve been assured that errors would be addressed in the next pay period, without so much as an apology or acknowledgment that this was a big deal. And while I’ve been fortunate that those incidents rarely have caused a problem in my personal finances, the attitude still ticks me off on principle.
As a professional writer, I have several bosses and people responsible for making sure my paychecks get to me on time and in the proper amounts. I’m fortunate that nearly every client I have right now does an exceptional job of handling payment - and that’s no accident. I am more likely to continue a relationship with someone who treats my income with respect. I’m also more likely to say yes to extra work and professional favors because being payed on time is a sign that my work is valued.
Don’t mess with my money.
Why is this not a simple concept that every business, employer and fellow employee understands?