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I just want some opinions about a shop/managment issue.

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I just want some opinions about a shop/managment issue.

Old 03-02-16, 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Jadesfire
Where do you want to be in 5 years? You are working towards your Bachelor's degree, right? It's time to focus on your resume. Will this job help you with that?
I don't have any specifics on where I want to be in 5 years. Comfortable with a little left over and engaged with what I'm doing is probably about right. I don't need the shop to do that for sure. And my resume is pretty hot, dean's list, Marine Corps intelligence, started my own at home business, and where I live, managing a locally owned bike shop provides plenty of social hob knobbing opportunities. I definitely am not capitalizing on my opportunities, but I enjoy it and I have enough autonomy and change in the sales/local cycling environment for things to be interesting. My area is pretty small, and IMO, my level of dedication and skill is usually found in people that can't afford to work jobs like this. The cycling population here is split about 65/35 with 65% being middle aged white people with annual incomes over $65k and poor people that can't afford cars being the other 35%. Thank you for your input and I love your Voltaire quote!
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Old 03-02-16, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Phil_gretz
Why hasn't anyone else asked this..
The outlook, I think is good. We've added a new product line that there's been demand for and we've never capitalized on it. I think the possibility of making somewhere around $35k is decent. The owner, before offering me this plan was worried sick about how the summer was going to go. Gross sales have grown every year so far. Things are generally more promising than not but we don't have things like projections. Either that or nobody tells me. And I'm pretty sure there's no growth strategy. There's not even a business plan. I'm more just upset that all my initiative and dedication isn't enough to guarantee me anything. I mean, I drink beers with this guy regularly he basically just tells me when he's going on vacation. He loves getting away. Why does it not seem like a good idea to woo me into staying? I hate tooting my own horn and I knew that's how I would come off but that's why I just wanted some insider opinions. To know if I was stupid for thinking I'm worth asking that kind of money.
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Old 03-02-16, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by LifeCycles
The outlook, I think is good. We've added a new product line that there's been demand for and we've never capitalized on it. I think the possibility of making somewhere around $35k is decent. The owner, before offering me this plan was worried sick about how the summer was going to go. Gross sales have grown every year so far. Things are generally more promising than not but we don't have things like projections. Either that or nobody tells me. And I'm pretty sure there's no growth strategy. There's not even a business plan. I'm more just upset that all my initiative and dedication isn't enough to guarantee me anything. I mean, I drink beers with this guy regularly he basically just tells me when he's going on vacation. He loves getting away. Why does it not seem like a good idea to woo me into staying? I hate tooting my own horn and I knew that's how I would come off but that's why I just wanted some insider opinions. To know if I was stupid for thinking I'm worth asking that kind of money.
The bolded items are things that would worry me. You stated your resume includes Marine Corps. Does it seem like a good idea to not have a plan for a battle (which is what business is in some sense). Would you want to follow a commander that is always trying to retreat? What kind of outcome would that usually bring on a battlefield? You are a civilian now (I assume), so you can choose your own path. My earlier comment about thinking about where you want to be in five years was not meant for you to have specific ideas on that position, but more what kind of life do you want to lead. If you want to be a bike shop employee making $35k a year with a Bachelor's degree, that's great. But it doesn't sound from your descriptions here that this owner is the guy to get you there. And I say that as someone that has gone through a similar experience and am now having to work twice as hard to get myself out of the rut I let my life fall into.
But whatever you decide, good luck and thanks for your service.
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Old 03-02-16, 01:48 PM
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Your labor, like everything else, is worth what you get for it. You have proven that you are willing to work for your current wages, and that's why you always get a bigger raise by leaving than by staying.

You say the shop can afford to pay you more, but that leaves out the question of whether the owner wants to. He doesn't. Whether he can afford to is the wrong question.
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Old 03-02-16, 03:00 PM
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Originally Posted by LifeCycles
I don't have any specifics on where I want to be in 5 years. Comfortable with a little left over and engaged with what I'm doing is probably about right. I don't need the shop to do that for sure. And my resume is pretty hot, dean's list, Marine Corps intelligence, started my own at home business, and where I live, managing a locally owned bike shop provides plenty of social hob knobbing opportunities. I definitely am not capitalizing on my opportunities, but I enjoy it and I have enough autonomy and change in the sales/local cycling environment for things to be interesting. My area is pretty small, and IMO, my level of dedication and skill is usually found in people that can't afford to work jobs like this. The cycling population here is split about 65/35 with 65% being middle aged white people with annual incomes over $65k and poor people that can't afford cars being the other 35%. Thank you for your input and I love your Voltaire quote!
I think that your are really fooling yourself here. As a hiring manager in high tech, someone presenting as you are presenting yourself would be an automatic no hire.

If you really have idea of where you want to be in 5 years that is a problem, you should have an idea even if it changes

You don't have a 4 year Degree.....Junior college degree's unless they are vocational (welding as an example) are pretty meaningless, Dean's list or not

Marines, I am assuming enlisted, depends on the hiring managers perspective. I was Coast Guard and understand pluses and minus of military background.

Overall you (at least in the posts) give a feel of entitlement and extreme hubris which would not go over well

IMHO You should consider focusing your efforts on your own business, then if you succeed you have proven your skills and hot resume
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Old 03-02-16, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by LifeCycles
The outlook, I think is good. . . I think the possibility of . . . I'm more just upset that all my initiative and dedication isn't enough to guarantee me anything. . . Why does it not seem like a good idea to woo me into staying? . . .
Talk and ideas are cheap. Put some hard numbers ($) on your dedication, etc, then you will know what they are worth and have a shot at convincing others. Simple fact: you can not substantiate your claims without solid metrics.

Is there some reason you avoid quantifying the value of your work? BTW, revenue is the weakest metric.
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Old 03-02-16, 03:50 PM
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I get a kick out of reading these kinds of threads. Besides the OP's seemingly entitled manor and his view of what running a business is about there are a lot of very good points and views made by many who have replied.

Here's my thoughts- I agree 100% with squirtdad. No way would I hire the OP if I sensed his attitude during the interview (and I have had enough interviews with school taught wannabe mechanics who felt they were entitled to a job since they went to UBI or Barnetts). Bringing in the bosses' wife's situation is completely off base. No one knows their relationship and it's manor of sharing the $ or the effort. I know no one in a small LBS (although doing $600K isn't what I would call a small LBS, the few workers does make that term right IMO) who is taking home $35K. When I had my shop (15 years) I took out about half that on the average. Sure there are some shops that can and do pay that much but they will be far different an experience then the shop the OP is at currently. I agree with the view of profit sharing as a way to defer pay. Promise a lot and "somehow" always have little profit. Like others said, I think it's time for the OP to move on. The boss has made his feeling known and if they aren't acceptable there's only two choices left. One is to shut up and continue working there for whatever has been offered. The other is to try another shop/field or start his own shop. I have had friends who, like me, went from employees to being the boss (and now I'm an employee again) and it always been interesting to watch their transformation from expectant employee to conservative boss. It would be interesting to see how the OP feels if he were the boss. Andy.
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Old 03-02-16, 04:46 PM
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Recommended reading: Leading Out Retail, specifically about the bike biz.
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Old 03-02-16, 06:01 PM
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You're working part-time, and filling in for the Owner/Manager when he chooses to be out of the shop. You can perform all of the duties of the Manager, while you are going to school, expecting to leave the business when you have received your Degree.

You are in what is normally and part-time, entry level job. Yet, you're wanting/asking for a full-time salary, and you don't have any eggs in the fire that would warrant that sort of pay.

You need to find another job. Someone else's suggestion that you seek a Shop Manager Job at another shop is a possibility, but you're going to have to work full-time, if you expect full-time employee pay.

I think the Owner offer of 20% profit sharing is more than generous, as long as you can agree on a fair way of evaluating last year's and this year's performance.

When I was in college studying electronic engineering, the Student Supply Store (owned by the College Foundation) used to hire a student married couple to run the store annually. The couple was paid, minimum wage, plus 50% of the net profit (to be determined) at the end of the year. The problem was, the store never made a profit, no matter how much the store grossed, and how much the sales were increased year to year. One year the couple managing the store got suspicious about the lack of a profit at the end of the year despite everything done to manage costs, and increase sales. Going over the year end books, they found a expense line that was labeled "cost of doing business". That line was the exact entire bottom line profit from the store after deducting all of the expenses (tens of thousands of dollars).

Leaving the profit at the store Zero Dollars, and the couple's year end share of the profits ZERO DOLLARS.
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Old 03-02-16, 06:44 PM
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2 things.

1. I was in China making good money for the local economy but less than mcD's here, when I found out how much money they took in from students I was like I want more and became bitter about it. They did put up all the upfront money, took the risk, had the connections and did a lot. I wasn't nearly as motivated but I did attend dinners with school head masters and rubbed a lot of elbows outside of the classroom.

2. I have a masters degree, in New York at a professional type job. It took 2 years to get fulltime after 2 years to even get a job after school coming out of the recession and still only get slightly more than what you're asking. Of course I'm a bit of a slacker misfit but with an every-mans charm. Stumps me what the avg person makes. Numbers are conflated and intentional misinformation I suspect but plenty people seem to have money. Where 'I'm from people I know are cashiers and the like. A book recently on sales (to sell is human) suggested people expecting 30k after bachelors had high hopes but thats no what we were led to believe. Who knows whats avg whats exected, whats reasonable.

I'd suggest being careful looking at how much someone else makes an how much of that you think you deserve. You seem young so if you have a better offer make sure you have it efore you go and I'll add you might not stay at the new place, may simly be a bad fit with their work culture. Nothing worse than switching jobs and gettng fired the first week when you thought you were movng on up.
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Old 03-02-16, 07:36 PM
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I couldn't even survive on 35k. Twice that is difficult to live on if you want to eat regularly and have a warm place to sleep.
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Old 03-02-16, 07:49 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob
My local Shop has to do real well in 3~4 months to survive the rest of the Year..

At 68 I Help out in the summer .. and am at $10 . with none of the additional Bonuses you get.
I, and presumably you, can retired afford to to work for chump change or pro bono in job we like/love. OP isn't in that position and feels, apparently justifiably, under appreciated/undervalued.
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Old 03-02-16, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by big chainring
I couldn't even survive on 35k. Twice that is difficult to live on if you want to eat regularly and have a warm place to sleep.
Maybe in the Chicago area... Taking my gross pay and subtracting taxes and money I'm putting into savings/retirement, I'm living comfortably on ~$20K. This is getting off topic, but I think people throw away far too much of their money, and therefore think they need a lot more than they actually do.
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Old 03-02-16, 08:15 PM
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I had to work for Chump change when I was Younger too .. Reagan loved all the Boomer kids .

pitted them against each other to keep wages Low.
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Old 03-02-16, 08:20 PM
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Dealing with the street People with drug habits is a Part of the Job I'm Glad the owner Handles
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Old 03-02-16, 08:43 PM
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Take what u know and apply it to your own business.. No partners and hire somebody like u at your current pay rate. I have been self employed for a long while now. I say dont have partners because they can hold u back when it is time to make important decisions for your business
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Old 03-02-16, 09:25 PM
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Wait until he's about to leave on his next 3 week vacation and hand him your 2 week notice.
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Old 03-02-16, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Stick69
Based on my experience with small businesses, if he doesn't want to sell the business and/or you don't want to buy it then there is no particular reason for him to pay you much more than the cost to replace you. Sounds like you are doing a bang up job and adding value but if you leave he will muddle through. If he knows you are going to leave when you graduate then, in his mind, you are just passing through.
That's the crux of the matter. Negotiating wages: all you can get is what the boss thinks you're worth.... and that ultimately depends on his/her judgement of what you bring to the business and what it would cost to replace you. Any further analysis is for the classroom, but won't really help you.

I wish you luck - it seems you have a lot of smarts and probably add value to whatever you get paid to do. You just have to figure out how to increase your value or cost-of-replacement to your employer.
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Old 03-03-16, 08:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Phil_gretz
Why hasn't anyone else asked this...

What is the expected value of your employer's offer? Have one of your schoolmates over in finance work the numbers with you. It's a probabilistic solution...might be equivalent or better than your request.

You're at $22500 full time (1900 hrs), plus 1 bonuses, or so. You want minimum $17.5K plus up, which necessitates what, $88K in additional revenue. + 15% on current. Not out of reach. What's the upside? Did you go over sales projections with him? Are they growing in retail or service? What's the growth strategy? His offer might be better.

No mention of benefits, though, so you'd have to figure premiums into the targets..
His feelings are hurt because the owner didn't acknowledge his worth, won't buck up.. so his mind is clouded, can't crunch the numbers as he hasn't taken that advanced finance/economics course yet as an undergrad, and thinks he's irreplaceable... lol.
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Old 03-03-16, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob
I had to work for Chump change when I was Younger too .. Reagan loved all the Boomer kids .

pitted them against each other to keep wages Low.
You give Reagan far too much credit...
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Old 03-03-16, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by LifeCycles
I just wanted to know what other shop managers or full time employees are making at shops of similar size or what any of you think. I know he is free to run it as he pleases and of course I am free to leave. I just really expected for him to at least pretend that I'm the necessity that I believe myself to be.
Life is not fair. Some bosses suck.

If your boss did not agree to anything regarding you putting in the extra effort before you did it, if you did it on your own initiative, then you have little to complain about if not compensated for it.

OTOH, if you've been so awesome at growing the business, and are banking on your marketing skillz, you would only need to bring in an additional $50k (as long as "dollars earned" = gross sales, not profit), less expected growth over last year sales in order to get to the income level where you want to be.

You made an offer, the owner made a counter-offer. Your offer was a fixed amount; the owner offered you a performance based bonus. If you did a whiz-bang job, you could make even more than what you asked for...
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Old 03-03-16, 04:39 PM
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I learned quickly that craftsmen are not appreciated. I think that because you CAN do so many different tasks, then its is thought let him do it and I dont have to worry about it. The fact that you have gotten some bonuses and a good freebie bike means he isnt a total miser, but you ARE underpaid. Depending on your location you may be severely underpaid.

I got lucky. When the new boss showed up at my work, he realized the value of all the different things I could do and increased my salary to a liveable level. Unfortunately its a vocation that I really dont want to do full time. Our focus may be changing soon and the new work is more in line with my skills. We'll see what happens.

I hope you do get something good out of your quest to be paid fairly for your skills. Its a difficult thing to get in this crappy economy.

-SP
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Old 03-03-16, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by big chainring
I couldn't even survive on 35k. Twice that is difficult to live on if you want to eat regularly and have a warm place to sleep.
^ I agree with this. Life is incredibly expensive these days when you take everything into account. I would tell the OP to move on, it sounds like he'll do better doing something else. I wouldnt expct much money out of a shop no matter what you do there.
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Old 03-03-16, 08:25 PM
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It's very hard to re-negotiate wages once you're in a job. The reason is simply that you have leverage when you're negotiating with a new employer. Most wage growth happens when people change jobs. How much "goodwill" do you have, in terms of customers who would follow you to a new shop?

I worked for a small business long ago. An issue with some mom-and-pop businesses is that they see every penny that goes out, as money coming out of their own pocket, so it's hard for them to part with that money. Now that I'm working for a big corporation, it's no skin off my boss's nose if he pays me more, and there are ways to make it happen by competing for promotions. Still, people who experience rapid salary growth, do so by job hopping.

The other thing about a small business is that their finances are typically opaque. For instance, where I once worked, the boss and his wife owned the building, and the company leased it from them. There was some major tax benefit to doing that. But it meant that the company's apparent profit was lower.
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Old 03-04-16, 08:05 AM
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If you stay because you love the bicycle business, consider that you might like it even more as a hobby. I think you sound very competent and should get on with your ladder climb in a job or business with a much higher ceiling. It is hugely expensive to raise and educate children. It is hugely expensive to save for retirement. Start climbing to a higher level now. In my job we have found vets to be a spectacular investment. Unparalleled discipline and dedication and ability to overcome obstacles. Find someone who gets that and can hire you into a business with big potential.
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