Would you be willing to pay more if you knew the employee was getting paid more?

Food service workers traditionally draw a low pay scale. The majority of fast food and casual dining workers earn .00-8.50 per hour. In states where minimum wage is closer to .00 per hour, maybe .75 per hour.
I own a bakery. Most of my workers start at .00 per hour. I have a small staff of only 8. Right now, one is making exactly .25 per hour (0 per week). Five are making .00-11.00. Two are making .00-10.00. I have been told by staff that I pay a little better than average. I got cursed out by restaurant owner when he found out what I pay (too much) and he closed his 0 a week account at the Business Improvement District meeting we were at. He did reopen it about a week later…
I want to make it part of my marketing that my workers are paid well. I’d like to give everyone a 3-5% raise this year regardless of the job title. I may have to raise prices about 2-3%.
Because natural gas prices have been slowly and steadily dropping since late 2008, my prices have not changed. I may pay 0 a month more for supplies, but my utilities are down about 0 a month, so it isn’t so bad. I gave 2% every year since 2007 in wage increases. I think it is the right thing to do.
You’d be surprised. I went from .99 to .99 (5%) on 1/4 sheet cakes in 2007. More than 50% commented the price went up. That’s nearly every repeat customer.

4 Responses to “Would you be willing to pay more if you knew the employee was getting paid more?”

  1. Celes Castro Says:

    As long as the product is good, who is going to sweat over a 2-3% price increase?

  2. stacia Says:

    No! Look at all the people at Walmart that need government assistance and they are never slow? If people can get something cheaper, they will it is human nature, unless you have something "EXCEPTIONAL", that nobody else has anywhere near.

  3. Cat Says:

    First off, good on you for wanting to value your employees! I’ve been on both sides of the employment line – boss and employee – and I can tell you it really matters. (It also winds up saving you and your business money in the long-run; hiring and training employees can cost up to 2 times their annual salary.)

    Next, if someone is closing an account and reopening it a week later, that’s not a protest of any kind. That’s a temper tantrum. Does an adult throwing a tantrum really deserve your respect of his / her opinion?

    Also, the worker is deserving of their wages. Yes, food service traditionally gets paid less. However, in the past, loyalty and good work usually results in a better salary. So if people are so up in arms about you paying your people more, their issue may be that they’re not paying their people enough.

    Finally, to answer your question directly: sometimes. I imagine that’s not a huge amount of help, but it is true. If I know the shop and the people, I don’t stop going there when prices go up. I assume part of it is because of cost of everything – including salary – and it’s worth that to me to go to a place where the staff are people I – as a customer – can rely on. But, I can’t say I’d be willing to pay more at a shop *strictly* because of that. While I applaud a dedicated employer / owner, what they pay their employees is not my concern, nor my responsibility. So, it really does come back to "it depends".

  4. Mabe Says:

    if you use your charge card for purchases for the business or even personal use, the points rack up quick..and you can use the points for cash, or gift cards for christmas, and it is a good time to have a bonus check, about 2 weeks before christmas, with a gift card..that should be good for the whole year and a week paid vacation for each employee, and idk if thats the way to go for you, and save alot of trouble trying to figure all this out..just a thought.