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CEO Says “We’re Like a Family Here,” Then Eliminates Paid Sick Leave

Boston, MA – Edmond Geyger, CEO of GeygerWorks Inc., a company that designs websites for small businesses, addressed his employees in a staff-wide meeting Thursday to say he considers them all to be “one big family.” He then announced the elimination of all paid sick leave and overtime compensation.

“I know many of you have heard me say before that I think we’re like a family here at GeygerWorks. I wanted to take this opportunity to tell you that that’s never been more true. I consider you all to be my second family. I mean that,” Geyger told a group of about 40 employees. “Also, because of rising costs related to space rental and other aspects of our business, we will no longer be providing any paid sick leave or additional pay for overtime hours worked, effective January 1.”

After some silence, Ted Marmon, who works in the IT department at GeygerWorks, raised his hand and asked, “Is there any chance of the paid sick leave or the overtime pay being reinstated at any point?”

“No, I don’t think so,” Geyger responded. “This is one of a number of cost-saving measures we will be putting into place over the next year. I should also point out that we are most likely going to be unable to offer our usual holiday bonuses this year. But the holidays make us realize how valued each one of you are, and let me just tell you, I certainly appreciate you guys more than ever right about now.”

Jessica York, who works in the marketing department, asked, “Is it definite there won’t be any holiday bonuses?”

“Uh, yeah, I think at this point, I can say it’s definite,” Geyger said. “It wasn’t definite, but I just decided it was going to happen as I stood here talking about it.”

“Oh, my God,” Jessica said, almost to herself. “I was counting on that money to buy gifts for my parents.”

“And you should! You should buy them something nice, because it’s the holidays, and they’re your family!” Geyger said. “And family’s great! Family’s the most important thing in the world. And you guys are great! You’re like my family! Incidentally, we’ll be capping paid time off starting next year. We haven’t arrived at a final number yet, but it will certainly be less than what it is now.”

Geyger soon broke up the meeting, but not before telling the employees to work extra hard in the coming days, because their holiday time off was coming soon — one day each for Christmas and New Year’s Day. He said, “Everyone should compensate for that by working twice as hard now.”

On his way out, Geyger stopped and turned. “One more thing,” he said. “I love you guys! Also, we’ll be discontinuing the coffee service, effective tomorrow. Happy holidays!”