Amazon is Valued at One Trillion Dollars

Shipping containers piled 5 high.
Photo by Michael Highland. Licensed as CC BY-SA 2.0.

Amazon is the second largest retailer in the world. It recently became the second company in history to reach a market capitalization of one trillion dollars. Apple was the first. Apple and Amazon have faced charges of achieving their success by overworking and mistreating their employees.

The New York times expose detailed employee abuse of both white collar and warehouse workers alike. Because of these media reports I never applied to work at Amazon.

In the spring of 2018 Amazon built an 860,000 square foot fulfillment center in Kansas City, Kansas. I just learned last night that my friend’s wife took a job there. She’s working three 12 hour shifts a week. She works nights. He says that she is an order taker. Glassdoor says that Amazon warehouse associates make $10 to $12 an hour. However, my friend says his wife makes $15 an hour. He may be exaggerating what she makes.  He also said that at the end of her first year she gets a share of stock.

He went on to boast,”That’s worth about $3000.”  Amazon stock (AMZN) closed at $1,952 today. Glassdoor says that Amazon offers employees stock options, not stocks.

Factory and warehouse jobs will always have an air of productivity hysteria. Unproductive seconds of hundreds of workers can add up quickly. Unfortunately, the majority of these types of companies are still using the old, “do it or else” motivation techniques.

Instead of a finger point to the door as motivation, companies should provide bonuses and time-off incentives. Wouldn’t it be great if an employee meets specific goals they could go home early with full pay for the shift? That way the boss can point you to the exit door with a smile instead of a frown.

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