The Evil HR Lady dropped a post recently about an employee who was upset because she just discovered a co-worker was earning more than her with less experience. Lucas explained in “Dear Abby” fashion why the employee ought to let it go: The economy is bad. Lots of people want your job. Suck it up. It’s less than $20 a week. I get it. She’s right. If you complain they might let you go, but does the employer have a right to discipline the employees for even talking about their wages? I mean – salaries are sacred secrets – Right?
You ought to know me well enough by now to realize that is not the end of the story. It is a common myth. I see it in employee handbooks that I review all of the time. It is time to wake up. Elvis has left the building. Employees can absolutely talk about their wages and complain about them to you and anyone else who will listen. Stand in the way and you’ll be staring down the barrel of an NLRB (National Labor Relations Board) shotgun. Yeah, right Kelsheimer, the NLRB is just for unions. Well, complaining about your wages is considered pre-union activity – even if it amounts to nothing. With the information all over the internet, employees now know where to complain. So, now you can’t say I didn’t warn you.