Gave An Employee A Raise , He Turned It Down ...WTF


Well-known member
It's not always dumb to ask questions.

In this situation, I wouldn't really ask as much of my peers as I would of the employee in question: "Why don't you want to accept this offer?"

Maybe he'll give you an honest answer.


Well-known member
It's not always dumb to ask questions.

In this situation, I wouldn't really ask as much of my peers as I would of the employee in question: "Why don't you want to accept this offer?"

Maybe he'll give you an honest answer.

From his standpoint I would assume that he doesn't want to be put into the "just got a raise category". He wants to be in the "up for a raise" category. Once you give someone an increase it is easy to overlook their salary needs for a relative amount of time.

rich apollo

Well-known member
So, you have a probationary employee that wants to dictate how much his pay will be...and when?
anyhow, ballsy move for a (again) person in their training period...and his/her current expectations forecast a disgruntled/problem employee in the future...
I would accelerate the introduction of the door to this person.

His/Her current expectations don't forecast anything of the sort. This is simply someone who has some level of ambition, and isn't afraid to express it. The big question is, "Is this person worth what they are asking for?" He didn't refuse a directive or tell you your baby is ugly or anything that warrants dismissal. This is negotiation, so put on your game face and negotiate.

The only question, in my mind, is, "Is the individual worth what they're asking for?" Does this employee provide enough value to the company to justify his demands? Or, does the employee show enough initiative to invest in their development? Have they met agreed upon milestones to qualify for an increase in pay? If there is an agreed upon path, and the individual is deviating from that agreement, then he/she needs to be firmly reminded about the agreement.

It's interesting how uncomfortable this situation seems to make people.


Well-known member
Maybe he is completely unaware of how these types of things work. Communication is key.

You really should sit down with him and work this out.

If he really is being arogant, maybe he doesn't realize it or maybe he does.
It could be a good teaching moment for someone who could use the advise throughout their working years.


Active member
Lets look at this from a real life view.
You hired someone with a goal of a 30% pay increase in 1 year.
At 30 days you offer him enough to increase his tax burden.
He has to protect himself from the employer.
If he accepts the first raise then in 90 days you offer him .86 more then he has agreed that the goals meant nothing. So know you hold him hostage.
If he decides to leave and the next position does not pan out he has basically lost his rights to unemployment.
What is up with this? has business really lost all ethics. If you make a deal with someone you have an obligation to show good faith in honoring it unless they do not live up to their end and in which case the obligation is to let that be known. otherwise business is no different than politics or is that politics has become more like business?


Well-known member
I think the OP is taking this too personal. It should be all about an employees worth to the company, and if it turned out that the guy was NOT meeting agreed upon expectations and were to be refused a raise , or offered a less than agreed upon amount, it would have been chalked up to " its just business". If your going to hold him to the standard of every other employee in the company you just might wind up getting performance like every other employee. I get the feeling that this guy showed promise. If that in fact is the case consider it "just business".


Well-known member
That comic strip is great. I will tell you a TRUE story. We had an ad out for someone to run our Challenge Champion paper cutter. Doing cutting and additional bindery department work. The ad gave a list of experience you had to have and machines you need to know. Well, this guy calls and keeps trying to tell me he is the one for the job. How great he is and so on......then when I "press" him to finally finally answer what his experience is....he says to I swear this is true..." I'm really good with scissors" THIS DAY we still have a laugh about that one

Years ago, we put an ad in for a "Mail Room Supervisor". The candidate's resume' showed a work history of supervising mail rooms before. Upon asking him various questions relative to the mailing industry (have you ever ran an inserter, a cutter, a folder, do you know the difference between a letter and a flat, do you know the difference between First Class and Standard (bulk) mail, etc.), it became obvious that he knew absolutely nothing about the mailing industry. I asked him how was it possible that he supervised mail rooms without knowing the basics of the mailing industry. Long story short, he supervised "mail rooms" for large corporations in high-rise buildings. You know, the mail comes in, and you sort it out by department, office, desk, etc and make sure it gets delivered to the correct employee.


Deleted member 16349

Frankly there is a lot of "Mom and Pop" business type of thinking going on here. If one had hundreds of employees, how would you handle all the individual requests for some action that is out of the normal planned salary review process. Well you can't. Well actually you can if you want to stay in a mom and pop style of business.

The original poster seems to have tried to at least have a structured process. It is not the responsibility of the employer to make life better for the employee beyond reasonable limits. If an employee screws up his work history, that is very probably his fault. People who can't wait for things to work out often make poor decisions and blame others. It is great to be ambitious but expecting a reward for just having an attitude is not reasonable.


Well-known member
If the employee received a 50 cent raise every month, he'd be at the agreed-upon $20/hour in ten months, which is 2 months earlier than planned.

Seems to me, the employer was gradually working toward the agreed-upon wage as the employee's skills grow.
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Well-known member
While I appreciate any raise, I have to say that twenty five cents on fifteen dollars is almost a rounding error. I've delayed a raise similar to this, didn't regret it at all. As a practical matter after taxes anything less than fifty cents an hour, or about $80/mo gross is marginal after taxes are taken out. Don't get me wrong, more is more. But it's like leaving a small tip, kind of like "why bother"? Schedules over reward under performers and under reward outstanding performers. Guidelines are useful here, but fair evaluations are more meaningful and appreciated. At least in my experience of union and non union shops of varying sizes.


Well-known member
I totally get what you are saying Nemo, but there are a few key items to remember here. The employee had never worked in a print environment before. He has a lot to learn. His "raise schedule" was set up in advance to reflect just that. As he learned more, the more he would make.
Something I left out was....
We give out weekly bonuses to the whole shop. When our shop does well..we pass it down. I dont know of ANY other shop that does that. So his pay this week was $15 plus $175 shop bonus (thats almost $20 HR) . So after thinking about it , NO I am not giving him a $3.00 raise for only working there 90 days. It is not right, as the other employees all worked hard and earned their raises. I do value his contribution, but the hard truth is that there are plenty of others that would love to have his job.

Thank you to every one who posted. Getting all the feedback helped me to see both sides. As well as how it might look to the other employees in our shop.

For our location State/City Living Wage is $9.63 and Minimum Wage $7.55 . Some People were wondering where we are located
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Raymond Ramirez

Well-known member
I have been running my Company for over 5 years now and Nemo... you hit it on the head. The corporate mentality is killing our country. If an employee is worth 30 dollars an hour and you can afford it.. GIVE IT TO HIM OR HER. By the way everyone makes mistakes. As long as they use it as a learning mistake.


Well-known member
I managed a team of 30 with 2 new recruits having no print experience, we have a process where every month we meet and document their progress and training, we have a reciprocal agreement in place where our trainees spend a week in another print company which has a fantastic modern bindery and we take theirs to spend a week in our plate room or press hall to give them a scope as broad as possible and hopefully expand their horizon

Trainees are first inline to go to our annual print conference with our senior management and our annual pride in print awards, which is a much celebrated black tie gala

The upshot of all this is that remuneration is discussed at the point of employment after that the focus is on igniting in them a passion for our profession and encouraging their growth in this trade, reward is via feedback and appreciation for a job well done from senior managers and peers and where possible instil a sense of confidence which in my view is far more effective than a selective nominal raise.

Our show of appreciation of staff happens daily, weekly monthly, our salary reviews are annual, works well for us.


New member
I need to move countries!

I started out as a comp in my fathers business when I left school at 16. I am now 46 with a wealth of experience and get approx £12 an hour. Wonderful UK.


Well-known member
I need to move countries!

I started out as a comp in my fathers business when I left school at 16. I am now 46 with a wealth of experience and get approx £12 an hour. Wonderful UK.

If you want to move to the U.S., check out various areas first. Some of us aren't any better off than you are.


Active member
I have been down this road many times. This employee will always be unhappy, and want more. Best to just lay him off, as opposed to suffer for several years, and do it out of complete frustration, and anger.

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