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Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

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View Poll Results: Would you accept a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?
Yes
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No
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Depends on how much the salary cut is
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Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Old 01-14-19, 01:36 PM
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Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I had this conversation with a colleague recently.

I know for many of you money is tight and every last dollar you make counts. But, if you were faced with this scenario, what would you do? Would you take a salary cut to keep your job? Or would you say no and take your chance with unemployment and looking for a better job? Do you think you worked long enough and hard enough to earn your current salary and taking a pay cut just to keep your job would be just a slap in the face?

Or would it depend on how much the salary cut is? Would you be just accept whatever your company says your new salary is because of your age and the lack of work in your industry where you live?
Old 01-14-19, 01:40 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Depends on the cut amount.
Old 01-14-19, 01:43 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Assuming there was no offer of severance, I would accept it and immediately begin looking for a new job. Either way, my time with the company would be over, taking the salary cut and trying to find a new job makes more sense to me than accepting being laid off.
Old 01-14-19, 01:44 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Depends on the amounts. Probably. I've been really poor before. Not "suburban poor". But, like, "Winter's Bone" poor.

You'd also need to be careful about your employer. No owner/executive wants to cut your salary. It's more likely that the business is no longer earning the coveted 10%-15% ROI and they need to cut corners.

A lot of people don't understand how close to failure just about every business operates at. Just keep those paychecks turned on and keep showing up to work.
Old 01-14-19, 02:09 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Absolutely not. There is no circumstance where that is a good idea and I could not be convinced that it would help the company in any way. So they shave say 5-10 grand off my salary how does that help them? If they are in that bad of shape it is off to new opportunities...
Old 01-14-19, 02:17 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I would probably at least start looking at other positions or elsewhere, as that scenario indicates a likely big problem with the company. However, money (needing a lot) is not as big of a concern as having healthcare for me at this point.
Old 01-14-19, 02:20 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I would take the pay cut to stay employed with benefits and immediately start looking for a new job. I can't imagine any scenario where unemployment > employed with benefits. Plus, it's always better in a job interview to still have a job rather than telling them you were laid off.
Old 01-14-19, 02:20 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I had a job where we had to take five furlough days every quarter. No pay, but we also couldnít work. After two quarters of this, they went to layoffs.

i didnít mind, since I qualified for unemployment for that week.
Old 01-14-19, 02:21 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Depends on the cut, but even then I think it would have to be significant for me to just accept being laid off completely. As Goat3001 said, it's still a job and you can use that time to begin looking elsewhere.
Old 01-14-19, 02:31 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

In my case it's a job I like at a place I like with people I like. I've been here over 10 years, get good benefits, and am looking forward to retirement. So, I'd probably take a reasonable cut.
Old 01-14-19, 02:32 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Originally Posted by fumanstan View Post
Depends on the cut, but even then I think it would have to be significant for me to just accept being laid off completely. As Goat3001 said, it's still a job and you can use that time to begin looking elsewhere.
Exactly. Get the resume fired up and start looking hardcore. You're losing some money up front, but you're buying the most important thing...time. Time to search for another job with paychecks still rolling in.
Old 01-14-19, 02:33 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Plus, if you readily take the pay cut there's really little reason for them to raise you back up at anything but a nominal rate because they now know they have you by the gonads, even if they turned things around and had record profits.

Of course, take the paycut and look elsewhere, I'm just saying if someone wants to take the paycut with dreams of staying with the company.
Old 01-14-19, 02:37 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I went through this a little over a year ago. Work in the Oil & Gas sector and with the downturn most of our competitors were having to make cuts. We are a small company and our owner didn't want to lose anyone so everyone in the company took a 20% pay cut. As a result, we were given every other Friday off to sort of make up for the lost income. Our closest competitor in size (and my former employer) had to let go 30% of their staff. We lost no one and have come out of the downturn pretty much unscathed. Our pay was reinstated and we got a huge chunk of "backpay" to help make up what we lost due to reduced pay.
Old 01-14-19, 02:40 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I think some depends on the type of company too; at mid size to large company I imagine if a pay cut was even an option that future layoffs are inevitable and you could be fucked regardless. At a small or mom and pop owned shop, I'd expect more flexibility and a chance of recovery that can go directly back to the employees.

EDIT: Basically what SmackDaddy said
Old 01-14-19, 02:59 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Really, in a situation like this, a business is more likely to downsize the number of employees, dump their work on the survivors, and keep salaries the same instead of cutting salaries or wages for current employees. Maybe a cut in benefits, too. Jelly of the Month Club instead of a cash Christmas bonus, shittier insurance plan.
Old 01-14-19, 03:19 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

My salary was cut 10% at the start of the Great Recession, which really pissed me off because the company was still making money and had billions in cash reserves. I stuck it out, though, as nobody was hiring at the time. It worked out in the end. Two years later I got a promotion and 30% pay increase.
Old 01-14-19, 03:37 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Originally Posted by Noonan View Post
I would take the pay cut to stay employed with benefits and immediately start looking for a new job. I can't imagine any scenario where unemployment > employed with benefits. Plus, it's always better in a job interview to still have a job rather than telling them you were laid off.
I agree with this.
Old 01-14-19, 03:42 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I had a year where I got less pay, but it was done as furlough days (which I could take when I wanted) so not so bad at all since, while I'm not rich I am doing ok. I also got a 20% pay increase (for the same job) about a year later, so even better now.

An actual decrease depends on the amount, but probably.

Last edited by Ginwen; 01-14-19 at 03:47 PM.
Old 01-14-19, 03:48 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

My employer took a downturn some years ago and everyone had to take like a 10-15% cut for a while. Other employers in the field weren't doing well either so I chose to stay. When things got better, they restored salary to what it was.

Personally, I would never quit to get unemployment due to a pay cut (unless the pay cut is so significant that unemployment plus insurance would be higher than my pay)but I would certainly look around to see if there are better options and jump should I find something better.
Old 01-14-19, 03:52 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I also did this once - I worked for a smaller company and they basically said "everyone needs to take a paycut of 20% for at least 3 months or we close the doors today". We opted for the cut.

This was all due to mismanagement on their part. It was already a bit of a loose job as far as when I came in and left but still technically a 9-5, 40 hours a week thing. During that time I started coming in around 10 and leaving around 3:30. And no one ever said a word to me about it I still did everything I needed to do - I just started leaving when I felt I was done.

It was actually pretty great.
Old 01-14-19, 04:02 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I’m a firm believer that it’s easier to find a job when you have a job. So I’d take the cut, stay and start looking for other opportunities. If I really liked the job, I might stay long enough to see if the company is doing well enough that perhaps the money would be restored.

My ex father-one-law told me the story how he went to work for a “start up”. It got so bad they not only had them take mandatory unpaid vacation, but at times had to pay them in stock that was essentially worthless at the time. He couldn’t find anything better so stuck with them. The company was intel and since he never cashed the stock out it ended up paying for his retirement that was significantly more than annually than at any time he was working for them.
Old 01-14-19, 04:11 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I'd probably accept but begin the process of looking for something else. Hard to imagine a scenario in which I'd prefer a lay off.
Old 01-14-19, 04:24 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

I thought hmmm... maybe if I'd been married for 30 years.

Spoiler:
but then I saw the word "off" at the end.
Old 01-14-19, 04:47 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

If I knew it was coming up and I had time to decide, I would simply be hunting for a new job. Important to know your worth and what not. If not, I'd take the cut and find a new job.
Old 01-14-19, 05:04 PM
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Re: Would you take a salary cut to avoid getting laid off?

Originally Posted by Goat3001 View Post
Assuming there was no offer of severance, I would accept it and immediately begin looking for a new job. Either way, my time with the company would be over, taking the salary cut and trying to find a new job makes more sense to me than accepting being laid off.

This ^^ exactly


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