A follow-up on Dan Price …
From time to time, I get an update on a ‘good people’ I have featured in the past. Today, I’d like to give you an update on Dan Price, who I featured in a 2017 good people post. You may remember that Dan is the CEO of Gravity Payments, a credit card processing company on the west coast, and that he cut his own salary and raised the salary of every one of his employees to $70,000 per year.His detractors and critics, including none other than the ignoble Rush Limbaugh, said he would go bankrupt, said the employees would become lazy and take advantage of him, and some even said he had some ulterior motive. Well, let’s take a look at Dan, his company and his staff today.
Since 2017 …
- The headcount has doubled and the value of payments that the company processes has gone from $3.8bn a year to $10.2bn.
- More than 10% of the company have been able to buy their own home, in one of the US’s most expensive cities for renters. Before the figure was less than 1%.
- The amount of money that employees are voluntarily putting into their own pension funds has more than doubled and 70% of employees say they’ve paid off debt.
- Rosita Barlow, director of sales at Gravity, says that since salaries were raised junior colleagues have been pulling more weight. “When money is not at the forefront of your mind when you’re doing your job, it allows you to be more passionate about what motivates you.”
Dan’s only disappointment, he says, is that more companies haven’t jumped on the bandwagon. He had hoped that Gravity’s example would lead to far-reaching changes in US business …
“Boy, was I wrong. I’ve really failed in that regard. And it’s changed my perspective on things because I really believed that through the actions that I did and that other people could do, that we could turn the tide on runaway income inequality.”
Five years later, Price is still on Gravity’s minimum salary. He says he’s more fulfilled than he ever was when he was earning millions though it’s not all easy.
“I’m the same age as Mark Zuckerberg and I have dark moments where I think, ‘I want to be just as rich as Mark Zuckerberg and I want to compete with him to be on the Forbes list. And I want to be on the cover of Time magazine, making lots of money.’ All these greedy things are tempting. It’s not like it’s easy to just turn down. But my life is so much better.”
I once again tip my hat to Mr. Dan Price who has made a difference in so many people’s lives.
Can I call you dad?
Peter Mutabazi of Charlotte, North Carolina, first became a foster dad in 2015.
“I grew up in Uganda. I grew up the poorest of the poorest. I didn’t have a good childhood. I ran away from home and became a street kid.”
Mutabazi said it wasn’t until someone took him in, someone he didn’t even know, and got him into school, that he realized his calling.
“I understand where [these kids] come from. Someone stepped in to help me. How can I not give back? I have fostered 12 children over the past, almost nearly four years, two children at a time, the most was three. The hardest part was always saying goodbye.”
Enter 13-year-old Tony, who first entered the foster care system at the age of two. When he was four, Tony was adopted by a couple in Oklahoma. But 2 years ago, Tony’s adopted parents left him at a hospital and never returned.
That weekend, a foster care worker contacted Mr. Mutabazi and asked if he could just take Tony for the weekend. During that weekend, that he learned Tony’s story — and decided he wanted to be his dad permanently.
“I remember telling him, ‘You can call me Mr. Peter’. And Tony was like, “Can I call you dad?”
Last November 12th, the adoption became final and don’t these two look happy?
Just a little thing …
Harold Storelee is 88 years old, but that doesn’t stop him from doing his own yard work. The last week of February, Harold was mowing his lawn when he fell and broke his hip. Harold was unable to get up, and was out of the line of sight of most passersby, so he lay on the yard in pain for around four hours before a group of school boys walking home heard his cries and flagged down a car to call 911.
Firefighter EMTs Alexander Trautman, Miranda Panuska and Garrett Bromley transported Mr. Storelee to the hospital, then resumed their other duties of responding to auto accidents and other catastrophes until the end of their shift at 5:00 p.m. It was then that Trautman looked at the other two and asked whether they would be up for going back to Storelee’s house to finish his lawn.
“There was no hesitation from anybody. We talked to our lieutenant and captain, and they were 100 percent behind it. We knew he’d be down for a while. We figured the least we could do was go back and help out.”
And that’s your weekly dose of ‘good people’. Now, let’s see if we can all be a good people this week, shall we?