Is Your Employer Stealing From You, One Soda at a Time?

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You might pilfer some office supplies, but your bosses might be making it back because you're irresponsibly thirsty.

An Allentown woman is now serving 57 months in prison for stealing from her employer – to the tune of $1.6 million over the course of an entire decade. That being said, many employees feel it’s really no big deal to raid the supply cabinet and bring home the occasional box of pens, tablets, or other office supplies. Even though it’s stealing nevertheless.

Did you ever wonder why your employer often looks the other way when he knows you’re absconding with an occasional box of pens or paperclips? I think I do.

Perhaps it’s because while you’re clandestinely working your petty pilfering skills at his expense, he’s stealing enough cash from you to more than make up for all the highlighters and correction tape you’re walking out the door with.

Odds are he’s probably doing it in the open too, right in front of everybody.

I watch my employer openly steal from a co-worker of mine on a daily basis. Sometimes it’s $1.25, but most days he gets taken for $2.50.

Okay, Len, what the heck are you talking about?

I’m talking about the soda machine. Where I work they spit out 20-ounce bottles for $1.25 a pop (no pun intended). Talk about highway robbery.

Why would anybody continue to buy sodas from the company soda machine, especially when you consider it really is not too difficult to find 12-packs of 12-ounce cans for $5 or so (after taxes and recycle fees)?

Let’s say my co-worker works 48 weeks per year, five days per week, and averages one soda per day. That means he’s paying our employer $300 per year so he can get his daily root beer fix at work. Assuming my co-worker brought his own root beer to work (like I do) at a cost of $5 per 12-pack, he would save himself $200 per year.

Two hundred dollars!

So who, exactly, is stealing from whom?

Now here’s some friendly advice: Before you go complaining to the boss that he’s ripping you off, tally the numbers, just to be sure.

Of course, I trust you’ll be using your own pencil and paper.

Stacy Johnson

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