60 People Share Times They Tried Way Too Hard At Work And Got Nothing In Return

Having a great work ethic is something many of us are proud of. It can feel really wonderful to know that you’re skilled at your job and that you make valuable contributions to your team. Problems can arise, however, when bosses don’t value their star employees. Going above and beyond sort of loses its luster when everyone is paid the same amount for unequal levels of work. 

3 days ago, Reddit user MikalCaober shared a post on the Antiwork subreddit featuring a woman explaining how she got fired from her job at a bakery after realizing she got paid less than everyone else and asked for a raise. Sadly, this is not an isolated incident. The comments on MikalCaober’s post were flooded with examples of employees realizing that if everyone receives minimal reward, everyone might as well put in minimal effort. We’ve gathered some of the most frustrating stories from those comments to share with you below, but we’ll warn you: you may feel the spontaneous urge to ask for a raise after reading this post. Below you’ll also find interviews we were lucky enough to receive from MikalCaober, who sparked this conversation, and Mark Anthony Dyson, a career consultant and host of the podcast “The Voice of Job Seekers”.  

Then when you’re finished reading these stories, we recommend checking out a Bored Panda piece where employees actually were appreciated for going the extra mile right here.


I have a high school friend who owns 15 franchises of a business. He brags regularly that he personally makes about 5 million dollars a year.

The other week he was complaining to me about how he would go out of business if he had to raise the minimum wage pay from $8 an hour to $15.

I asked how many total employees he has, and he said 120. He could give every single employee a raise or 25,000 a year and still make a million bucks yearly without even affecting the actual business profits

Image credits: Purple1829

We got in touch with MikalCaober on Reddit to see what inspired him to originally make the post that sparked this conversation. He told Bored Panda, "I felt a sense of injustice when I saw this tweet, not just because the employee was fired for asking for pay reflecting their worth to the bakery, but also because the gender pay gap may have also been an issue." We then asked him if he believes situations like this are common. "From what I've seen on r/antiwork, it sounds common," he says. "Of course, we shouldn't assume that all employers do take advantage of their best employees, but it seems that many do." In terms of what he looks for in an employer, MikalCaober said, "I look for employers who genuinely see employees as human beings, not just assets."

In reference to his post, he also raised the point that, "Many of the Redditors who responded suggested that the person might have been fired for different reasons and that they could have been spinning the story to make it look like they were fired for being a good employee. It doesn't help that Twitter's character limit doesn't permit all details to be included (not unless you make your story span multiple tweets). I'd be curious to know what the employee says and what the employer's side of the story was." People online are always looking to play devil's advocate, so I would be curious to get a larger scope of the situation as well. As of now, we haven't been able to get in touch with the woman who made the original Tweet, but I have to admit, I'm inclined to be on her side, rather than her employer's.


Dont you know you were supposed to be grateful just to be there? I'm a baker. The only way I got a raise was from leaving to work at a place paying me almost twice as much. This was the ONLY way my boss understood that I was worth more than 9 an hour.

Image credits: One_Ad_4420

We also reached out to Mark Anthony Dyson, founder of The Voice of Job Seekers, to hear if he thinks it’s common for employees who work exceptionally hard to be taken advantage of. “Yes, and those exceptional workers have values placed on the quality of their work, and many view their work as the pathway to getting promotions and raises,” Mark told Bored Panda. “Employers who take advantage of hardworking employees understand and encourage it even if they experience burnout.”

We also asked Mark if he thinks employees require incentives to work hard and wondered what he thinks of the idea that minimum wage jobs will yield minimum effort from employees. “No, people aim to work hard, but need incentives for productivity that their boss values the most.” He went on to explain that, “Hard work is subjective when it’s undefined. Quantitative and qualitative data goals define productivity, then it is more motivating. There are times when the eye test is enough, then effort counts. If there is transparency behind the goal (like a leaderboard), and the results are based on data, the rewards will matter. There are always top performers in minimum wage jobs, but outstanding performances are often unnoticed.”


I worked somewhere similar and the owner stopped coming in to the shop, except to drop off groceries. I was the only cook during shifts with one dishwasher and I only made 13.50 an hour in a very high priced state....when I knew I had to quit for my kids' and husband's school schedules, I gave her TWO MONTHS notice... find someone to replace me and I'll step down after training before my notice was over. She started snubbing me in the restaurant so I ditched out. Good luck with finding someone before the 2 months are over

Image credits: chesti_larue

Next, we asked Mark if he had any tips for employees who feel their contributions go unnoticed by their employers. His first suggestion is to “amicably meet with your boss and ask for clear performance goals and incentives”. He then recommends asking for frequent feedback and keeping records of it. “Ensure documentation is in place, and make sure your boss signs off on it,” Mark added. He also says to “keep a list of how you add value and present it to your boss regularly”. “The list keeps your accomplishments in front of them and helps you to remain productive in his eyes.” Lastly, Mark added that, “If your boss allows their boss to join the meetings once in a while, use the opportunity to put your work and ideas out there for their feedback. This will help your visibility and potential recognition for future promotions and projects.”

If you’re interested in more tips from Mark, be sure to check out his podcast “The Voice of Job Seekers”.


I was working a full commision paid job, no hourly. After two years, I asked for a 10% raise because I found out I was paying the entire rent and bills for the business just based on my commisions. My boss threatened to Lower my percentage from 55% to 50% if I brought it up again. I quit the same night, brought in 6 of my friends and took everything I had.

Almost all of my clients followed me to my next Job, which humbly offered me 60% at the door and another 5% for every two years I worked up to 75%. The few clients that were unable to make it to my new location still didnt go back to my old job, just went to another place closer than were I had moved.

Business went under a year after I left because he wasnt good enough to keep it open by himself [and whatever clowns he hired after me]

10 years later I still send my ex-boss Photos and Updates of his building. He usually gets two updates a year, every 6 months. Its now a small clothing store. They're doing very well, even launched their own in-house brand in the last year

Image credits: ZeroIQmoves


I was working in a nursing home in which the boss's daughter and the daughter's best friend both got hired for $6 more per hour than even their most experienced and senior staff. When I found out I asked for a raise, got told if I want to make $X then I need to go work the other side of the building and sign up for over-time. (Other side of the building is about twice as much work and has grueling back-breaking lifting with mandatory stay-over if the next shift calls out.)

I ended up quitting, I'd like to think I was one of their better workers, so hopefully they regret losing me. I did get a call from the administrator on behalf of the CEO that they were going to look into the situation and see if they can get me back, but that was 4 days ago, so who knows if they'll come back with a counter offer or not.

Image credits: ZAPANIMA


I took a university job to advance my career. The position wasn't approved but I was overly enthusiastic and did the work regardless. I did this for 2 years; took the department to the next level of division 1. My boss and I agreed to have the conversation about permanent employment at the end of one summer after I took 4 athletes to the Olympic games. My boss had advocated for the position to be full time and we finally had the talk; he had offered the job to someone else and expected me to continue my "unpaid" position indefinitely because it was "good for the university." I left on the spot and never worked in the field again.

Never ever ever ever give even the slightest of f*cks about your job.

Image credits: jagulto

The idea that valuable employees are taken advantage of is not new. In 2015, Stanford Business published a piece titled “Why Companies No Longer Reward Loyal Employees” featuring insight from Stanford Graduate School of Business professor Jeffrey Pfeffer. He notes that in our regular lives, we make agreements with one another all the time and we understand how to reciprocate treatment. At work, however, these social expectations seem to fly out the window. “Implicit contracts are violated in the corporate world on a daily basis,” says Pfeffer. “Workplaces not only fail to acknowledge past employee loyalty and contributions, but they also renege on what has been implicitly or explicitly promised, such as pensions and retiree health care.”


It’s a lot like being in IT lol. Learn everything do work above your position no raises, no promotions. The best option is always leave and go elsewhere take your new skills and get a better job.

Image credits: Inevitable-Lettuce99


I used to believe that if you scratch their back, they scratch yours. We asked for a price hike for years, and we went above and beyond for our flooring outfit we subcontract from. "There's just not enough in the overhead" was the track stuck on repeat. Still. Above and beyond. Scratch their back. They WILL scratch ours.

Then I found out that the owner of the company goes golfing 4 times a week, minimum.

Now I do what I HAVE to. Not what I CAN do.

Image credits: badassmamojamma


I worked at a NYC style pizza place in the small suburban town I grew up in. When it was bought back by the original owner he belittled my 4 year degree after I JUST graduated, the same degree his daughter said she wanted to pursue, and asked me to deep clean a deep fryer w/o eye protection or skin protection. I read the label on the junk I was handed to use and it was a big fat OSHA violation to NOT HAVE SKIN PROTECTION. I asked if gloves or safety glasses were available. I was told no, so I left and never looked back.

Image credits: autumnaki2

Pfeffer worked with doctoral student Peter Belmi on several studies investigating why people feel less obligated to reciprocate favors in a work environment than they do in their personal lives. What they found, Pfeffer says, is that, “People operating in organizations generally have a business mind-set, which is more calculative and oriented toward the foreseeable future. They tend to make decisions that maximize the benefits to them personally while minimizing the cost.” The studies also showed that participants were strategic about who they would offer help to, noting that if someone could be valuable to them in the future they were more likely to receive a favor. The participants even said that they tend to question the motives behind workplace favors in the first place, so they don’t feel obligated to reciprocate if the original intention wasn’t genuine.

On the other hand, these studies found that when we receive personal favors, we want to reciprocate them without considering how useful the person can be to us in the future. We simply understand that it’s the right thing to do. “But we found almost the exact opposite in an organizational context,” Pfeffer says. “There, it’s all about calculations. If we don’t feel repaying the favor will benefit us much in the future, we won’t do it. That calculative, future-oriented mind-set means we shouldn’t expect companies to be as strongly bound by moral norms.”


What’s sad is that $1 an hour raise is only about $100 a month after taxes.

So many places losing people because they won’t pay 1, 2 or 3 hundred dollars more a month to keep them. Like the company won’t make that up in the next 20 minutes.

My wife used to work for a vet clinic where she handled the finances for them and they only payed her $14 an hour.

They make $20k a DAY and refused her a raise of $100 a month. She no longer works there. She gave them her life. She came in 6 days a week, 8 hours a day for 3 days of the week and 12 hours a day the rest and they lost her over $100 a month.

Image credits: EpicBlueDrop


I worked for Miss Moffets Mystical Cupcakes in Olympia WA. I worked there for three months. Two months through an internship program where I was by a different company and then 1 month directly for Miss Moffets.

Despite my boss, Rachel Green, refusing to train me on proper cake decorating, I was still expected to frost cupcakes and was yelled at for not knowing precisely how to place the strawberry slices.

Rachel would schedule me for overnight shifts and watch me through the cameras. She called me to scold me everytime I dared to sit down during mixing or baking times. Or when I stopped baking to clean. Or when I finished up early and left instead of staying longer to bake the next shifts cupcakes.

Rachel Green owns Miss Moffets Mystical Cupcakes. And at the end of my third month, the first month I would be paid by Green, she pulled me aside, told me my work was subpar and that even though I could mix, bake and frost a cupcake as fast as her star baker, clearly I wasn't good enough to stay. And that since I put out such subpar cupcakes, she would not be paying me for my full months work. And then she told me to leave and not come back.

I was fortunate enough to know D, the person who gave Green the money she needed for starting her business. I went straight to D and she let me listen in when she called Green. Oh man she screamed at Green for nearly 10 minutes. Then D told Green that if she don't pay me immediately, that Green would be sued for breaking labor laws and have to pay me at the very least everything she owed me if not a whole hell of a lot more. Oh man it was glorious.

Image credits: AzraelWoods3872


I keep telling people. Get up go to work, be on time leave on time. Be decent/ good at what your specific job is. Do no "take one for the team" unless you are able to do so without discomfort and if you are helping a colleague who is likely to help back.

Your real life and friends take priority always.

Image credits: gabynew1

Pfeffer went on to note that this calculative culture creates a vicious cycle. Employees that don’t trust their employers to follow through with promises are more likely to quit, and people who believe they have been treated unfairly are more likely to channel their resentment in how they treat others. Pfeffer says that it would benefit everyone for companies to begin placing greater value on morality and ethics. “Research shows that when people believe implicit agreements have been violated, they are more likely to be dissatisfied, less engaged, less committed to work, and less productive,” he says. “There are hard consequences to breaching these norms, and yet we breach them all the time.”


When I worked at McDonald’s in 2018 I was hired on at 7.25 an hour, I got really good at the job really fast, was one of the fastest order takers and McCafé makers and eventually they let me learn grill too. After 13 months working there I got 2 raises and was now making $7.70 lmfao. I found out that the owners wife was doing interviews and hiring new people on at $8 an hour. So I was training new people who were making more than me after I’d already had 2 raises just because they were hired by someone different than me. Eventually they made me crew trainer which would’ve upped my pay to $8 an hour and they had me working the position for months and never gave me the raise so I quit. Now at my new job I make $18.50 an hour

Image credits: Tama_Breeder


My wife got a job at DVF a few years ago. She was top sales in her store, district, state, and region within her first 3 month. She continued to just kill it quarter after quarter.

She got a new coworker and was training him (she liked him as a person but said he was a terrible employee who could barely follow simple instructions.) She gave him a ride home and learned that he was make 3.50 more an hour since hire compared to what she was currently making (before commission)

She called her boss right after dropping him off, quit on the spot and mailed the key back into corporate. They blew up her phone for 3 days offering her more money, store management, better scheduled etc. She told them straight up she isn't an after though.

Image credits: LooseLeaf24


Worked for a bakery owned by crazy neurotic Christians, Found out that they were giving 'incentives' to poor performing employees at the end of each week for hitting certain thresholds that I was already hitting. The incentive was $20. We worked the same hours.

They were literally getting paid more to be worse at their job than me. Absolutely stupid. Capitalism is stupid. I hate it here.

Image credits: Delicious_Orphan

While many companies demand loyalty from their employees, unfortunately, the Covid-19 pandemic made it clear that those corporations don’t hold themselves to the same standards. In March of 2020, a string of powerful CEOs made public statements declaring that their employees did not need to worry about job security within the pandemic. The list of companies promising their employees were safe included Morgan Stanley, Salesforce, Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, Bank of America, Deutsche Bank and Visa. However, over the next 7 months, many of those companies changed their stance on layoffs. By October 2020, Citigroup continued a layoff of 1% of their employees that had paused during the pandemic, and Goldman Sachs got to work eliminating 400 jobs. Wells Fargo also announced plans to cut thousands of jobs, along with Deutsche Bank and Salesforce. 


Stuff like that happens at a smaller scale almost routinely. People fresh out of high school or college will start a job and have a lot of pep in their step giving a lot of effort and eventually something will happen where they don't feel appreciated and then they figure "why give extra effort or care when everyone else doesn't" ...

Image credits: clkou


I worked at a coffee shop and I loved it. It was terrible pay, but the work was something fun. I loved making coffees, loved the food prep, loved the customer service. I'm not a morning person, but I even loved the 6am shift.

They gave me a promotion about a month in. On my first day as a shift supervisor, I got the safe codes and learned the opening procedures. The next day, I was pulled aside and told that $300 was missing from the deposit, and that I was the most likely suspect because I just got the safe codes. I, of course, was gutted and furious. Either they thought I was incredibly stupid, or that I was so unprinicipled that the second I could get my hands on money I ran with it.

As it turns out? The day I learned the safe codes, etc, a woman accidentally dropped her large coffee on the sales counter and fried one of the debit terminals. I remember it happening, but had been told cash was missing, so never put two and two together. But they would have been able to see that the cash balanced, and it was the debit totals that were out. And they didn't bother to say a word to me.

I stayed just long enough to get a new job, and left without notice. As**oles. Like I'd risk my reputation and clean criminal record for $300 on the very first day I got a promotion.


Reminds me of the time I was doing work study tutoring at my college and I found out that my coworkers were making almost double than me hourly. Asked for a raise was denied and never went back lol.

Image credits: Blue_cheese22

The significant number of layoffs during the pandemic are an upsetting reminder that employees cannot trust corporations to look out for them. Concerns have also been raised about these ruthless corporations beginning to replace as many jobs as possible with robots and AI workers. While that prediction sounds like the plot of a dystopian novel, it’s not an impossible future. Some companies have already allocated funds towards robotics and artificial intelligence, and Amazon even has robots working in their warehouses. Former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang is particularly concerned about the future of American jobs, when companies are showing their true colors already. Yang is advocating for Universal Basic Income to be paid to Americans to ensure that, if they can’t have job security, the government will at least provide enough help to get by. 


This happened to me. I started when the company had only two clients. When I started working, the turnaround time for the sample processing was less than 24 hours, because I was more than willing to do over time and come in at odd hours throughout the day to make sure the samples were received. Because of the quick turnaround time, we were able to secure more clients. I then Asked for a raise. And then suddenly I was being “terminated” for unprofessional behavior and not doing tests according to SOPs… which I WROTE. After that, I haven’t volunteered at any of my jobs to do extra stuff. If you want me to do more stuff, then you gotta pay me more.


I once worked at a place and got the highest sales every month even though I often took off because of major depression. Instead of praising me, my bosses made my colleagues hate me by saying stuff like, 'Animefaerie is off sick all the time and still makes higher sales than you.' Made the workplace rather toxic.


A “mom n pop” coffee shop tried to do something similar to me. Went in for my first day of training, knocked it out of the park! My second day, the guy who was training me ghosted and did not show up. I had to call the owners at 4am because I could not get into the store. We worked our butts off getting everything ready for the morning. I thought I did amazing. When the wife gave me an official offer letter I asked if I would be getting additional compensation for working an undesirable shift. They ghosted me completely and I had to chase them for my check for training. They kept saying they sent it via direct deposit and I explained to them how that is literally impossible because in my new hire paperwork I selected “paid by check” and did not enter in any bank details.

Finally was able to get the check that I had to go get from the store. I told the employees there what happened and they were like, yeah, not surprised, this place is terrible.

Image credits: Captainx23

There will always be employees who are a bit more concerned about punctuality and deadlines than others, but it’s important for employers to boost motivation among their staff and acknowledge those who are giving 100%. Positive reinforcement is proven to be more effective than punishment, and it creates a more pleasant work environment. Offering incentives like bonuses, gift cards and additional vacation days are great ways to boost productivity and morale.

In 2006, one Sears department store was having trouble getting customers to sign up for the store’s credit card, so they took the approach of offering employees bonuses in their paychecks for each credit card they registered. Every 90 days, the employee who had submitted the most credit card applications was also rewarded with a gift card. It didn’t take long for the store to activate more credit cards than any other Sears in the state, and employees were able to benefit from the increased paychecks.   


My mom had the same thing when she was younger, but didn't get fired. She quit her job.

After a couple of months, they asked if she wanted to come back and have a raise. She ended up asking for even more money than they offered and they accepted.

She also asked for her own department and got it and it is now the most profitable department of the company. And she is a total bada*s.


On my first job, they announced the employee of the year. They said he is a hardworking guy, who works for free (yes, 0 salary) - they gave him this "opportunity" to get experience in the field of IT.


I was working in a law firm and knew I was the lowest paid employee because that was just my rank. But then a project came and I was hand picked to work on it alongside a partner. It was urgent, so I had to drop all of my other work/push deadlines back. I came through. Firm got a big payout and everyone received windfall, down to non-legal staff. Twice the monthly pay for everyone. Great!

Except I didn’t get anything on top of that bonus. I worked my a*s to get the same bonus as everyone else. People who literally never touched the file got more money than I did. I confronted the partner about it and he said, didn’t I get a bonus? That was the moment I decided that clown wasn’t worth my efforts and I was never coming through as clutch for him again.

I resigned a few months later. I now get paid twice more than what they were paying me, for less stress and less work on my part. That partner has asked for some files here and there, and had it been any other partner, I would’ve combed through my personal copies of files to see if I could track it down. Nope. I left a USB with my old secretary, go ask her.

I send gifts to friends who are still at the firm (both legal and non-legal staff, all the partners I’ve worked with) every Christmas. I leave him out every time.

There are a few factors for companies to keep in mind when it comes to positive reinforcement tactics. According to Manley Feinberg, a business speaker and author, in an article for Entrepreneur, “Momentum is the real key to success with any positive motivation program, and momentum is driven by consistency. Consistently recognize and reward the behaviors and results you want. Also, beware that when you accept, tolerate or otherwise allow behaviors you don’t want, you are rewarding those as well by continuing to employ and compensate the employee.” 

Staying future oriented is also important for positive reinforcement. Employees must understand the long-term goals to stay motivated in their daily tasks, and they have to be able to see advancements in their own futures. When promotions and raises seem like they’re on the horizon, employees have a reason to work harder.


Huh. I worked at a bakery once and they conveniently wrote me off the schedule around payday, saying "we'll call you back in soon". Days went by and I called multiple times asking when my next shift would be because I was under the impression I was, you know, employed.

Turns out they just wanted some extra help during a busy period and had no intention of calling me back (or paying me) lol

Image credits: alaskadotpink


Years ago I worked for Cadbury Adams , I did the job that every shift needed 2 people to do ! I was killing it ! So after 3 months I asked to be hired on full time , they said they couldn't hire at the moment, so I quit ! Coworker called me 2 weeks later telling me they had to hire 2 People to do what I did ! Moral of the story, know your worth , never settle and always work hard even if they don't appreciate you , that way when you leave , they f*cking wish they had done everything to keep you !


My girlfriend which is an adorable short and cute woman was literary the best barista on her well known branded coffee place/take away. She would make the best coffee I would ever drink in that or any other same brand place.

She really loved her job, I would go there sometimes to enjoy a capuccino that wasn’t burned or felt like drinking ashes.

She would do extra cleaning duties, always smile and cover shifts.

Then there was the other girl. Tall big boobs, pretty sexy woman. Sh**ty coffee almost always late, almost always on a hangover, she did cover shifts too but also caused a lot of her shifts to be covered because she was drunk. That girl which started a month after her was taking 20% more hourly than my gf, doing less work, offering worst service and being a pain to other employees that had to almost always wait. As a customer watching her hangover face was disturbing every time.

After 1 year the boss decided to sell the place. The drunk one got promoted to manager of the place and my gf got laid off a month prior to the sale for asking equal pay to others after being there for a full year and doing such a good job.

So yeah these sh*t exist and are not made up. Communication skills, attractiveness and stuff like that get you better pay with less work done.

While no employee should feel that their skills aren’t being valued at work, it should not fall on their shoulders to improve the way a company is run. Employers should constantly be looking for ways to improve morale and ensure that employees are motivated to do their best. With more and more workers calling out their bosses online, we can only hope that employers are paying attention and changing their ways. Enjoy reading the rest of these stories, and don’t forget to upvote the responses that you found the most upsetting. Then let us know in the comments if you have any stories to share of employers that tried to exploit your skills, we’d love to hear how you reacted!


I’m going through the same thing! I’ve worked at this small business for almost 5-6 months and I like it for the most part. Pay is pretty poor ($14/hr in Las Vegas) but not the worst. This week my boss put a job posting on Indeed offering $15/hr. I’m confronting him about it today and if I’m denied a raise then I’m walking.

Image credits: Listen2theshort1


Got hired for 1 specific job title.. then when word got out about my resume that i had actually gone to school for something different, they asked if i would be willing to do BOTH things for them. Meaning not only will I do what i was hired to do.. but also help them with development on projects in line with what I took in school. When I said. OF course.. I then sent an email to the COO and CEO about possibly a raise since i would be doing both things.

anyways, the next day the COO told me "I'm not a good fit" lol


Jesus getting underpaid is so incredibly common, I just had a company try to poach me, offering half of what I know they paid previous employees prepandemic. 60% of what their competition is offering.

They must have forgotten that I’m 10+ years in this industry with my own clients and not only know many of their clients as well, but also previous employees, and their competition. How they could forget when they tried to poach me because of those facts, escapes me. F*cking depressing though. Deflated the entire conversation.


This happened to me also! I worked at a bakery, was told I had to work at least one, if not two weekend shifts every weekend because I was the only one that could do it and was threatened to not be rostered any hours if not - and I did it dutifully, would stay back to clean the bakery after work when everyone had gone home and start all of the crazy morning shifts as well! I later found out that literally everyone else got paid more than me and penalty rates on weekends (I didn’t) which is why they insisted on me coming in! When I asked to have more convientent shifts or also be paid penalty, the owner baker got really defensive, turning it back on me for taking home the day old bread (literally everyone did, and it goes in the bin otherwise) saying « I only make 10cents in the dollar for every loaf we sell » in order to guilt trip me


I did something similar and ended up in a similar situation, it has made me so angry and paranoid towards employers that i struggle to keep showing up at work.

Especially since nowadays a full time job doesn't result in a decent size roof over your head anymore.

Every single day on my way to work i'm tempted to just go somewhere else and disappear or just jump off a bridge and stop existing.

Image credits: Dioapple


I worked for a local grocery store in the Deli. Myself and the two people I was hired with all did training together, all worked the same shift together and after it was all said and done did the same job as one another. In the end we learned I was making $1.40 more because my job title was different. That was literally the only reason I made more, and when it was brought up to our manager they got frustrated with me for letting them know that I made more like it was my fault they got cheated out of the extras pay.


I once worked for my husband's company. He had 2 business partners. In order to make sure they didn't get sued for nepotism, he was harder on me than everyone else and went out of his way to make sure he would never be accused of it, even not firing someone who needed to be fired simply because they previously were my subordinate. Then, the wife of one of his partners got pregnant so they "hired" her, even giving her a paycheck just so that she could get health insurance, though she never did work or even come into the office. Although the company never got sued for nepotism, it obviously had enough issues that it is no longer in business. And I'm sure you can guess it wasn't great for my relationship with my husband.

Then, I recently moved to Hawaii and learned that nepotism runs through the veins of nearly everything there. People who are unqualified are hired or given authority or privilege just because they are someone's uncle or cousin. The management company of the residential community I lived in had a receptionist that would dictate and enforce rules she had no authority over. Everyone was afraid to get on her bad side and she got away with it because she was married to the manager.


Worked at a place that had people who have been in the field for 20+ years getting paid $15-20 an hour. The first guy that got hired there in my time working there (3 years) got paid 7 dollars more than any of us because he volunteered to paint a few walls in the lobby. When word got around he was looking for a new job; they offered him 3 dollars more.

This guy was 20 years old. Had no prior experience and few relevant skills.

Fast forward 3 years. The place shut down because everyone quit due to everyone getting paid sh*t.


This happened to me once. It was a new restaurant. Everyone else quit so I was stuck working the line all by myself. When I wanted a raise they hired 2 new people to replace me then fired me.


Basically. Got hired to work as an assistant to the Community Business Manager at Barnes and Noble but had to do everything else on top of that often demanding position. Turned out, everyone was getting paid more than me because they skipped over me when it came to the yearly reviews. Thank god getting put on temporary leave due to COVID gave me the courage to tell them to f*ck off when they asked me to come back.


I got a job as “maintenance” in a Groceries store, which is pretty much janitorial work. I did the emergency cleaning like if someone spilled or broke something I was the one to do it. On top of cleaning bathrooms that I absolutely hated not because of cleaning, but because how disrespectful some people can be. I helped stock and face the product, break down pallets, help get carts from the parking lot, bagging, Nuro the online shopping thing, putting back returns which would be an insane amount like filled to the brim carts, I would every night have to go to receiving and “help” throw away product that went bad. Everyone was nice except the deli department f*ck they were super condescending and would just leave their trash for me to do it by myself. After 2 weeks I was tasked to do literally everything except being a cashier. After 3 months I asked to be moved to the Online shopping thing because it was way less stressful and they got f*cking paid more than me. Everyone got paid more than me. I specify 3 months because that’s the probation period and had to work that before they can move me to a different department or give me a raise.

The manager for the nuro department and the manager for the drug department wanted me because they noticed I was busting my a*s and they liked that. An incident happened that completely had pissed me off and I was ready to quit, but HR talked me down and told me they’ll move me in 1 week. After a week they moved me to only bagging an said they are about to a hire a maintenance guy to replace me. Another week goes by and I ask when am I being moved and they said just wait a little, the Nuro manager asks me when I moving to her department I was like idk they said soon. It was time for schedules to come out and the person who was moving me coincidentally left for her 2 week vacation. She put me back as the “maintenance” at the top of the morning without tell me, I only found out when I saw the schedule when I got to work. I was livid.

Unable to contact her and I would have to wait to be moved until she came back, I asked the morning manager about the supposed mistake. It wasn’t. I asked if anyone was notified that I was going to be moved. They weren’t.

After my questions the manager got annoyed and in a such a dismissive an a bi**hy tone said “They put you as the maintenance, so someone has to clean the bathroom or you can talk to the boss” right there I was about to lose my f*cking mind. I went to the boss and asked him if HR informed him about me moving departments. He wasn’t.

I took my uniform off and threw it on the customer service table. All I said was “I quit” an left. I got 2 calls from the manager I was most cool with I didn’t answer, I got a call from the Hr person who was supposed to move me I didn’t answer. F*ck them.

The worst part is I noticed this post was too long so I left some things out, but it was a lot of things that led up to me being fed up.


This happened to me. Loved my job at a local coffee shop, all my coworkers rocked. After a year I got promoted to manager. I started trying my best to make everyone has happy as possible, and soon realized that everyone was barely scraping by at $8 an hour. I went to the scheduling manager and she brushed me off, then I found out she was making $16. I was making $10, and I ran that damn store all on my own.


One of the temp jobs I had put me to work in carpentry because they found out I could swing a hammer. I found out the agency upped my rate to that of a carpenter instead of a laborer, $14 an hour, but pocketed the difference and kept me at $9 an hour. I didn’t say sh*t because I was 19 and convinced I’d get fired if I complained.

Image credits: jmradus


I was hired as a bread baker by a (non-union) contractor for a major tech company. The job was A+ learning new techniques daily from an awesome chef on a graveyard shift. Days before Christmas we were told the bread baking team was getting disbanded and punted into the pastry team because someone at corporate decided graveyard shifts were “unhealthy”. Meanwhile our union shop counterparts are happily baking bread…


I worked at a place where I could cover for other people, stay late, come early.

They gave the b**ch who was salty a promotion and I verified it with my boss and literally got my sh*t and walked out.


I’m a manager at a popular “mexican” restaurant chain that’s named after a pepper and I feel pretty proud of the number of people I’ve awoken to the falsehood of meritocracy. I’ve even spurred my fellow managers into demanding a raise because they were only making 1 dollar more despite having YEARS in experience above me

It’s crazy how much simply explaining how circumstances are unfair can wildly change someone’s mentality


Reminds me of teachers. Union pay scales ensure you get paid by seniority, not competency. These two often don’t correlate, and in fact, at a certain point they likely inversely correlate. The sh**tiest, laziest teachers I had were typically those waiting around for retirement.

Image credits: bankerman


I’m a server and the f*cking restaurant I work at right now takes credit card transaction fees from customers out of OUR TIPS. These places are hell and they’ll burn you at every turn to extract labor and increase profit. Business owners in the food/restaurant/hospitality industry are scum.


I am in a similar position and am doing things way past my pay grade, like I should be making double what I make but I fear if I try and ask for a salary adjustment my hours will be cut or I’ll just be fired. This is a real situation I think happens more often than people realize .


When I was in high school. I was hired to replace a person like OP. I just laughed when they wanted me to do everything the previous person was doing.


I use to work at a bakery as a dishwasher. Honestly I liked it, they left me alone, I listened to my own music in the back and just did my best, washing cake pans and buckets pretty much all day. I did it so well they barely scheduled the other dishwasher anymore so I pretty much was the sole janitor and washer. I only left cause I got a better job and left on good terms, but I later learned they had to hire 2 people to work part time to do the job I did full-time and to see they struggled with the same job I did all by myself. Felt nice to know I was decent and good at my job.


This is similar to my situation as a kindergarten teacher. I work my arse off, working 7 days a week (except for the 2 week holiday per year) for 2 years now. I found out last week that my new lazy colleague who barely works 40 hours per week and has less experience than me earns 25% more. I asked for a raise but they told me he gets more because he's a native English speaker.


Typical. I worked for what I thought was fair compensation and was denied an annual raise again and quit. I Handed over my duties to another worker who was shocked at his new work load since I was software and supported Engineering which ment my Christmas tine off wasn't since Engineering used that time to test new hardware and since I supported the testing system I had to come in. I also was was responsible for the Web site and responded to Marketing. The guy taking over my responsibilities wad not at all happy since I also had software applications to develop. Made me happy I left.


My fiance is destroying our relationship over a sh*t job who doesn't give two f*cks about her. Love this timeline we are in.


I work in corporate position that sometimes lets me see an employee’s salary. I usually can’t find a pattern to the discrepancies. Race, gender, and education seem not to play a role. Sometimes employes who have been there the longest seem to suffer due to raises that don’t keep up with market for new hires, but that isn’t always the case. I think that sometimes it must be a “gut feeling” and willingness to negotiate.


One thing i know as a small business owner - most dont fire what they consider good help if it is just a fair pay raise. if i was in this spot with what i considered a good employee, i would absolutely get them to a fair rate right away. What i think a lot of people forget is that not all businesses are set up to be hugely successful. A local bakery may only have so much pay it can give out and keep the doors open. The person working for 15 years who all the local customers love might be much more valuable vs the person who is relatively new and good at the job functions. I think for some of these posts there may be more complicated answers as to the “why” employee go fired. Also most people feel they are good workers and boss is horrible but that is definitely not always the case either. Not necessarily disagreeing with this person but id like to know a little bit more.


I worked in a bakery in a grocery store for 10 years. Technically some of the worst shifts for a normal schedule, but I’ll be honest, it was a very enjoyable job for me. I unfortunately live in a very expensive area, and it wasn’t able to give me a good enough wage to afford to live there, so I had to get a better career. (If I could’ve supported myself on the pay, I’d have stayed there forever.) I still have very fond memories there.


This is almost spot on my situation haha. I work at a grocery store bakery, I can do every job in that bakery, and I’ve been there 6 years. They bumped everyone’s pay to 11 last year so I make as much as someone who just started despite my experience and skill set. (Nothing against those employees! They deserve more money too!)

My boss has been hostile because I finish my job early and I don’t offer to help in other departments. So I’m excited to see if I get a raise this year and how it compares to my coworkers. If I don’t get one/get a pathetic one, I’ll probably leave and do art commissions haha


I have a similar story from my first job, I remind my mom of it any time she suggests I learn new skills at work in order to try to get a raise. Never happening again, I’ll be taking that raise first


I was a baker myself once! I left because the pay sucked. 12/hour. They offered me 14/hour to come back because I left for a job making 13/hour. I agreed and they just never gave me the raise so I no called no showed as the only baker on bight shift. I also had to deliver the pastries after I made them. So customers were pissed. They called to b**ch me out and I threatened to sue them and they gave me all the money I'd have had if I got the raise lmao. That was like 6 years ago. Also the manager was the worst I ever had. Hygiene was grotesque and he also made the pastries. Saw him drop 1 donut on the floor and pick it up and serve it. He only wore a beard bet after getting multiple complaints about hairy cruellers. He would admit he never showered and often just wore the same dirty cloths. His teeth were rotting out of his head from bot brushing them and only drinking soda. He would share all of that freely with anyone. He made 10 more an hour than I did and would scream at everyone who he trained like Gordon ramsay. I told him he was an idiot and to expect to never hold an employee


I worked retail for years. Became a go-to person in every area of the store. Not just cross-trained, I trained a lot of people for pretty much every job in the store. By the time I was done there, minimum wage increases caught up to me and I was making the same as the new-hires I was training. I only stuck around as long as I did because they let me work where I wanted with my limited availability. I watched all the most competent people slowly move on to better things.


Yeah I worked at a cafe for about 5 years, did opening shifts (5am), closing (11pm), was a shift leader, learned bussing. The last year I became a student and started getting that kind if treatment. Found out I wasn’t getting raises with the rest of shift leaders and that people who weren’t SLs were getting paid more or the same as me. Asked for a dollar raise, got 50 cents and quit. Feels really sh**ty to give so much of yourself to make someone else’s life better only for them to f you over when you become a slight inconvenience to them.


We had a guy that sounded just like this. In fact he was a good worker that you never had to ask to do something. If he saw a piece of trash..picked it up. Saw a pipe with a small leak..tightened it up or found somebody that could. BUT...he was a GD toxic mf'r! His mental state erased all his qualities. He asked for a raise due to learning more than his job entailed. They fired him to weed out the 1 bad apple.