In the U.S., the federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. 29 states have set a higher minimum wage than that, HOWEVER all by 6 states have a tipped minimum, or an amount that’s lower than minimum wage that you can pay your staff if they also receive tips. Rules vary on how little an employer can pay state by state, but in general, when we think of minimum wage, we think of lowly paying jobs, and for many, minimum wage isn’t enough to support themselves or their families or make their lives work without picking up more work or sacrificing basic needs.
But what happens when we start to think about minimum wage differently? What if we could guarantee that people left work every day with MORE than what they need just to meet their basic human needs? And what sort of power structures would have to be reassessed, and flat out knocked down, for that to happen?
In this episode, we talk to Michael Schroeder of Oddly Correct in Kansas City, who, on November 4th, 2019, announced an incredibly ambitious new pay structure for the business. On Instagram, they announced that all employees would make at least $18 an hour—if they made that in tips plus their base wage, that was great, but if their tips didn’t get them up to that hourly wage, they would subsidize it, and ensure that every employee took home a guaranteed amount of money everyday. And Michael says it's because they wanted to flip the idea of minimum wage on its head.
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