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Monday, December 30, 2013

Breaking Tradition

Breaking Tradition
Sometimes circumstances control decisions that need to be made.  Two things are usually involved in the decision making process: 1) your heart, and 2) your wallet.  If your heart is in the right place and your wallet is financially adequate, the decision is easy. Go with your heart.
Many years ago as an employer, I preferred to reward my employees with year-end bonuses instead of pay increases.  To be fair, bonuses were performance based, and reviewed by a committee.  The preference for bonuses over pay increases, is that increases simply become a burden on payroll by being ongoing whether you have a great year or a bad year.  If the corporation is having a bad year financially, everyone is made aware during the course of the year, and bonuses are not expected.  Yet if you can still manipulate your financial picture and come through with a bonus you become a hero.
The post about tradition doesn’t involve payroll, but something equally important if not more.  I am not really looking for direction because unfortunately I am the one that has to bite this bullet.  I simply couldn’t help but wonder if there are other people out there in a position similar to mine.
While our family has been drawing names for gift exchanges at Christmas, we (as heads of the clan) have always maintained the tradition of giving every man woman and child in the immediate family a nice gift.  We are fortunate that our family size keeps increasing, and budget for gifts is ever growing.  Unfortunately all our grown children have taken their cue from us, and are also starting to give everyone a nice gift.  No one is complaining but I can’t help but notice that the gifts are ever more expensive. 
No one is skipping any meals over the gift giving, and no one is complaining, but I feel the need to bring it under control.  Since I opted for early retirement, I am the one that is best equipped to make an excuse for cutting back.  I plan to bring the adults over to a meal and discuss the possibility of not only drawing names but adhering to it.  I know that the gesture is a great one, but in reality if everyone kept their money they could spend it on themselves any way they see fit.
Family matters are not easy to settle and sometime the best intentions can be misunderstood. Wish me well, as I plan to bring this to a discussion and solution early in 2014.  In the meantime if you are wrestling with a similar dilemma, and have a better solution let me know how it works out.  The best is yet to come…..

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