British Airways asks staff to work for free - would YOU do it?
British Airways' relationship with its unions isn't terribly warm right now. As BA tries to recover from a record annual loss of £400M this fiscal year, they have already cut up to 2,000 from its cabin staff of 14,000. Now, BA is asking its remaining 40,000 odd employees to help battle 'tough market conditions'. How? By working for up to one month... for free.
In a move that could potentially backfire, BA CEO Willie Walsh has already signed up to renounce his £61,000 monthly salary for July, and is asking the rest of the staff to "bat one for the team" also in a company wide email, offering staff to take unpaid leave or unpaid work.
But as one BA crew member astutely pointed out, Mr. Walsh's annual income of £735,000+ per year is a marginal gap from a basic salary of £11,000 a year.
BA however states that this is not compulsory: "It's a request - you can take unpaid leave or you can work for free, and the chances of people working for free are very unlikely, but there might be some people who want to take unpaid leave." Either way, this should end well.
What about this scenario: Your company just cut half the staff, and is now asking you to work for free for a month... what would you do? Your options include:
1) happily continue to work without pay. That's how much you love your job.
2) take time off without pay. Drink lots of beer and twitter.
3) take time off without pay, and start a strike.
What sacrifices would you make, if any at all? And would you be able to get by without a month's salary? And if you are at a senior level in the company, would you risk being seen as a "bad sport" for not taking a pay cut in tough times?
Let's hear your opinions!