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A Mississippi caterer raised the minimum wage at his company and sales are higher than ever
via Fit Chef Catering

The minimum wage has been one of the most hotly debated political issues in the country over the past decade. Those that are against raising the wage claim it will lead to unemployment and business closures.

Supporters of an increase in the minimum wage believe that it will not only benefit workers but help small businesses by increasing consumer spending, spurring productivity, and lowering workplace turnover.

Business owners tend to be against raising the minimum wage because it raises the cost of doing business. However, a small business owner and chef in central Mississippi raised the minimum wage at his company and things couldn't have gone better.


It's a great lesson on how people will provide you even more value when you show they're valuable.

Two weeks ago, Kevin Roberts, the owner of Fit Chef Catering in Vicksburg raised the entry-level wage from $9 an hour to $11 across his entire company.

While many in the U.S. are fighting to raise it to $15, Mississippi has the lowest minimum wage at $7.25 an hour, so the rise to $9 is considerable. Plus, Mississippi has the lowest cost of living in the United States. Hawaii, which has the highest, has a minimum age of $10.10.

Roberts didn't just give a lot of people a raise, but some great perks as well.

"This new payscale structure also includes a free daily meal, monthly tip outs, monthly performance bonuses and options for employer based group medical insurance," he wrote in a Facebook post that has gone viral.

All of these new incentives meant he had to raise the price of his products by 11 to 13% which adds up to about $.50-$.75 per meal.

After improving his employee's compensation, he noticed that there were eight very positive changes to his business.

  1. Employee tardiness is down
  2. Callouts have been reduced
  3. Employee morale is at an all-time high
  4. Teamwork is at an all-time high
  5. Product quality is at its absolute best
  6. Employees are stepping up in leadership
  7. We have more applications on hand than in the last three months
  8. Production is at an all-time high.

"And, since we are a business," Roberts wrote. "Last week was the HIGHEST grossing sales week we have had as a company since opening 3 years ago. And we are expected to have a growth of near 30-40% about to occur in the next month with the opening of a new location."

The whole experience has changed the way Roberts sees himself and his business.

"The best thing I ever did for my company was take a long hard look at how I was leading and began working on my leadership," he wrote. "I went from leading with an 'iron fist' to now a compassionate heart. Needless to say, the results speak for themselves!"

The Fit Chef Catering story shows that there doesn't always have to be an adversarial relationship between business and labor. It proves that sometimes raising wages can be a win-win for everyone involved.

All images provided by Bombas

We can all be part of the giving movement

True

We all know that small acts of kindness can turn into something big, but does that apply to something as small as a pair of socks?

Yes, it turns out. More than you might think.

A fresh pair of socks is a simple comfort easily taken for granted for most, but for individuals experiencing homelessness—they are a rare commodity. Currently, more than 500,000 people in the U.S. are experiencing homelessness on any given night. Being unstably housed—whether that’s couch surfing, living on the streets, or somewhere in between—often means rarely taking your shoes off, walking for most if not all of the day, and having little access to laundry facilities. And since shelters are not able to provide pre-worn socks due to hygienic reasons, that very basic need is still not met, even if some help is provided. That’s why socks are the #1 most requested clothing item in shelters.

homelessness, bombasSocks are a simple comfort not everyone has access to

When the founders of Bombas, Dave Heath and Randy Goldberg, discovered this problem, they decided to be part of the solution. Using a One Purchased = One Donated business model, Bombas helps provide not only durable, high-quality socks, but also t-shirts and underwear (the top three most requested clothing items in shelters) to those in need nationwide. These meticulously designed donation products include added features intended to offer comfort, quality, and dignity to those experiencing homelessness.

Over the years, Bombas' mission has grown into an enormous movement, with more than 75 million items donated to date and a focus on providing support and visibility to the organizations and people that empower these donations. These are the incredible individuals who are doing the hard work to support those experiencing —or at risk of—homelessness in their communities every day.

Folks like Shirley Raines, creator of Beauty 2 The Streetz. Every Saturday, Raines and her team help those experiencing homelessness on Skid Row in Los Angeles “feel human” with free makeovers, haircuts, food, gift bags and (thanks to Bombas) fresh socks. 500 pairs, every week.

beauty 2 the streetz, skid row laRaines is out there helping people feel their beautiful best

Or Director of Step Forward David Pinson in Cincinnati, Ohio, who offers Bombas donations to those trying to recover from addiction. Launched in 2009, the Step Forward program encourages participation in community walking/running events in order to build confidence and discipline—two major keys to successful rehabilitation. For each marathon, runners are outfitted with special shirts, shoes—and yes, socks—to help make their goals more achievable.

step forward, helping homelessness, homeless non profitsRunning helps instill a sense of confidence and discipline—two key components of successful recovery

Help even reaches the Front Street Clinic of Juneau, Alaska, where Casey Ploof, APRN, and David Norris, RN give out free healthcare to those experiencing homelessness. Because it rains nearly 200 days a year there, it can be very common for people to get trench foot—a very serious condition that, when left untreated, can require amputation. Casey and Dave can help treat trench foot, but without fresh, clean socks, the condition returns. Luckily, their supply is abundant thanks to Bombas. As Casey shared, “people will walk across town and then walk from the valley just to come here to get more socks.”

step forward clinic, step forward alaska, homelessness alaskaWelcome to wild, beautiful and wet Alaska!

The Bombas Impact Report provides details on Bombas’s mission and is full of similar inspiring stories that show how the biggest acts of kindness can come from even the smallest packages. Since its inception in 2013, the company has built a network of over 3,500 Giving Partners in all 50 states, including shelters, nonprofits and community organizations dedicated to supporting our neighbors who are experiencing- or at risk- of homelessness.

Their success has proven that, yes, a simple pair of socks can be a helping hand, an important conversation starter and a link to humanity.

You can also be a part of the solution. Learn more and find the complete Bombas Impact Report by clicking here.

via UNSW

This article originally appeared on 07.10.21


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