Have you worked in a job at a time when people with your skill set was so in demand that people would throw you bags of money? Â Did you notice that, come raise time, the barely competent among your peers received increases nearly twice the rate of inflation? At the same time, the superstars would receive about 1-2% more.
Meanwhile, in less exuberant times, the superstars have to claw and scratch to keep pace with inflation.
Sometimes, these pay raises are termed “merit increases”. Â Many times, they’re not even cost-of-living adjustments. Â In any case, if money was to be a motivating factor and effort required a demotivating factor, the employee who is doing barely enough to earn a “merit increase” is coming out ahead.
If money isn’t supposed to be motivating, what’s the point of expending the effort to determine who should get what increase? Â Just give a flat percentage or amount increase. Â After all, all these calculations for who gets what result in a very small difference between employees, and can easily be seen by your superstars as a slight against them any way.
Back to the “merit increase” terminology. Â Can we just can call it a “random crap shoot budget allocation” increase, or maybe if you work for a less coddling organization, a “you’re lucky you have a job” increase?