WRITTEN BY DAVID DICRESCENZO
On this day in history, August 12, 1955, the National Minimum Wage broke the glass ceiling and was set at one dollar per hour. Today as back then, we hear a lot of talk from democrats and the entitlement crowd about raising the minimum wage, and except for the actual numbers, the arguments on both sides haven’t changed a bit; employees want more and employers resist it.
So to celebrate this monumental day I thought I’d shed some light on the subject.
Minimum wage is and always has been just that, a minimum. It is designed for the new, mostly unskilled entrant into the work force; no matter what the task is, to teach them the responsibility of showing up on time, being prepared for the job requirements, and to otherwise honor the contract between them and the company they sign on with. I.E., you agree to trade hours of toil for dollars and have to actually perform some sort of function in a prescribed manner; rarely is such a position meant to be a career. For example, a student who takes a job as a delivery driver or burger flipper after school is not looking at a career path; he or she is just trying to earn some pocket change and hopefully to learn the value of working for pay.
Today’s minimum wage demands have left many employers rightfully and smartly choosing a new type of efficient “employee;” the kind that is never late for work, never offers the customer a side of attitude with their fries, never whines to managers, has no language barriers, isn’t subject to worker’s comp insurance or matching employer FICA, doesn’t create any workplace turmoil, rarely, if ever makes a mistake when orders are made, can add perfectly and always gives the correct change, and the real kicker is they are far less expensive after the initial investment. That’s right, I’m talking about a vendor kiosk where a customer simply approaches it, places an order, pays on the spot, and gets their food or other items brought to them by the now relatively few required “minimum wage” humans whose only burden is to make sure that the order for customer “A” isn’t confused with that of customer “B.”
Another huge difference between today’s “minimum wage” employee and those back then is the work ethic. They were happy to have that job and in most cases offered the employer an honest day’s work for an honest day’s wage. Not only that, some of those workers quickly rose up from the pack to earn much more than minimum wage, and more than a few made it through the ranks to upper management and all of the associated financial perks that come with it.
I understand that yesteryear’s $1.00 per hour sounds like less than chump change today; however, that single dollar had the same buying power as $15.00 might today. Take a look at my examples below, (note, some may be off by a few cents, but you get the idea):
(Price Comparison, 1955 vs. 2018)
** In real money, I.E. Gold @ $35.00 per ounce back then and $1209.00 per ounce at press time; 256 one ounce coins bought the same house then as now. Additionally, just like today, you weren’t going to qualify to buy that new car or that new house while only making minimum wage.
Also, no one expected that they should earn more than they were worth to an employer; that phenomena is something relatively new, and if you arrived at work back then and started making phone calls to your friends or had them drop by to hang around, you’d be shown the door in a hurry. These days, the new workers think it’s perfectly acceptable to be texting, tweeting, and checking emails constantly, and get upset when told they cannot.
By the way, if you didn’t know, the Federal Minimum Wage is currently set at $7.25, with some individual states much higher; the highest being Washington, DC which just went up to $13.25 in July. Even if they ever do raise it across the board to $15.00 per hour as many are clamoring for, after taxes and paying for what will absolutely be sub-standard living conditions, you’ll likely still be getting around on a bus.
It boils down to this; minimum hourly wage or perhaps slightly more is the starting point for any new worker. If you’re satisfied working to make someone else realize their dreams while neglecting or outright abandoning your own; prove your worth and value by putting in the extra time and effort, and you might earn more money, trust, and prestige within their company. Always just enough to keep you going back, but never enough to satisfy your dreams; put another way, JOB is a euphemism for Just Over Broke…!
However, if you know deep down that you’re worth a whole lot more than any government mandated minimum hourly wage, don’t get caught up in the life sucking, losing attitude of a minimum mindset. Be all you can be; don’t just survive, strive and thrive. Your mother will tell you you’re worth more because that’s her job; but it’s your job to prove it to yourself.
I have recently been blessed to partner up with two legends in the relationship marketing industry, Brig and Lita Hart, and as a result, find myself in a position to help people far exceed any sort of government prescribed minimum wage and begin fulfilling their own dreams, but there is a catch; you have to stretch yourself and step out of your comfort zone and be willing to make some changes.
So here is my offer; if you’ve read this far, have an entrepreneurial bone in your body and you’d like to learn a way to leave the mediocrity of a minimum wage mindset in the dust once and for all, I invite you to reach out to me at[email protected] and I will show you how to improve every area of your life; financially, spiritually, and personally.
It doesn’t matter if you’re just starting out earning at 18 or running out of earnings at 68, a new lifestyle awaits you.
Opportunity is pounding on the door; open up and let it in…!
Visit David at The Patriots Press