President and Chief Executive Officer of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
702 SW 8th Street
Bentonville, Arkansas 72716-8611
|Michael Dean Andres
President, McDonald’s USA, LLC
One McDonald’s Plaza
Oak Brook, Illinois 60523
First of all, I’d like to wish the two of you; Happy International Workers Day, or May Day. The real labor holiday, not to be confused with the officially sanctioned Labor day conceived by the oppressors of workers ( You know who you are! ) celebrated in September.
In the Fall of 2013, I wrote to your predecessors; pleading with them to raise the minimum wage paid to the employees of your respective companies.
In this letter, I was going to congratulate both Jeff Stratton, and William S. Simon on the recent announcements of slight pay increases to their workers. It is not much, but better than nothing. ( Especially, after that diatribe that Jeff Stratton delivered to the McDonald’s employee Nancy Salgado when she confronted him about her poor pay and got arrested for her trouble. )
I hope that the two of you are not superstitious. I wrote to exactly two corporate presidents in the last year and a half, and both of those presidents were replaced. I hope that you will both be able to stick around long enough to see your respective wage increases completely implemented. Goodness knows the American worker has been suffering from the collective abuse of American management like yourselves for over 50 years. For my entire working life – I graduated from High School in 1981 – wages overall for most Americans, other than high flyers such as yourselves, have failed to keep up with even base inflation, while the productivity of the American worker and your profits have soared.
I urge you both to share the tremendous wealth that the corporations you manage generate, with your own workers; the people who actually create that wealth. Day in and day out, your employees toil to earn you the millions of dollars of compensation you will eventually earn when your stock options mature. ( Doug McMillon should change his name to McMillions – as he will eventually earn $25 million just for 2014! ) Both of you and I know that Doug McMillon does not contribute 961 times the value of the typical employee earning $26,000* / year (gross – with the new raise) to the Wal-Mart company. Perhaps you could establish a multiplier of 300 or so between the lowest wage to your compensation. Perhaps Doug McMillon could get by on $7.8 million a year**.
The push for a $15 / hour minimum wage is not going away. You can try to buy off your workers with something less. If we have another recession, fear of losing their jobs will force your workers to accept less for a time. But eventually your workers will find some tactic for getting what is rightfully theirs. Don’t force them to take it from you.
* $13/hr x 2000 hr/year = $26,000 ( assuming 40 hr weeks -> 50 weeks/year x 40 hr/week = 2000 hr/year )
** $26,000/year x 300 = $7,800,000