Wednesday, January 16, 2019

MORALE IN LISBON by Larry Fillmore

At last night’s Town Cou
ncil workshop, the subject of the morale of the town employee’s was discussed. There was talked about having an employee appreciation day at Beaver Park, which is an excellent start. It is a shame the Town Council is so blind to the obvious. The reason employee’s morale is so low, as I see it, is twofold: (1) The lack of leadership and (2) all employees being treated the same.

I think the lack of leadership is self-explanatory. So I will move on to the second point and that is rewarding, the good and bad, employees with the same pay raises. This is done every year by the Town Council, recommended by the Town Manager, approving Cost-of-Living Allowance (COLA) for all town employees. This is probably the dumbest idea anyone ever came up with. 

The employee who is work the hardest and trying to improve themselves are compensated at the same rate as the employee who is enrolled in the Retired on Active Duty (ROAD). The road program means that they are doing just enough to get by or less and being rewarded the same as someone working to improve the quality of service residents deserve.

The reason the town approves COLA is because all town employees are rewarded by the same percentage but the pay raises are never the same. The percentage is based on the current salary and this stupid program applies to wage workers and management personnel the same. An example of this is the Town Manager; whose annual salary is over $90,000.00, receives a 2% COLA increase of $1,800.00 while a wage worker earning $40,000.00 receives only $800.00 a year increase. How can anyone justify this?
Management positions should never be included in COLA increases in this town.
If you want to raise the morale of the employees in town, they need to start rewarding ONLY the good employees who are working the hardest. This is rewarding the good employees and hopefully encourages the poorer employees to work harder. Another method is to have each department nominate an employee for “Employee of the Month” and “Employee of the Year”. With both these positions, comes a small increase in their pay or time off. This will recognize these employees and hopefully push other employees to improve.

There are numerous methods to boost morale in the town. The problem is the leadership has to first to acknowledge the problem exists and then come up with a plan to address the situation.
I understand because I have recommended a number of solutions, they will never be considered, which is too bad.

Larry Fillmore

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