The CEO of an Ohio-based real estate investment firm announced that he’d made $1.6 million in the stock market over eight days of coronavirus volatility. But instead of keeping this enormous sum of money to himself, the head of the company decided to give it away to his associates.
Larry Connor, the owner of The Connor Group, declared that he would pay out every single dime of the stock market dividends as bonuses to his employees. The move was his gesture of appreciation for their hard work and dedication amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“These are challenging times,” he said via video broadcast. “But the way our people have responded has been nothing short of heroic. Our No. 1 core value is ‘Do the right thing.’ So when I think about how I made the money compared to what our associates do on every day, to me, (paying the bonuses) was the right thing to do.”
According to a press release, the company will be giving out bonuses to all “non-highly compensated associates.” The employees will be receiving amounts ranging from $2,000 to $9,000, so long as they remained and continued to do a good job through June 30. The firm will be sending out checks first of July.
Founded in 1992, the Connor Group operates 13,000 apartment units in 14 different markets. It handles around $2.5 billion in assets. The real estate investment firm employs roughly 400 associates and has kept its luxury apartment communities open as essential businesses throughout the COVID-19 outbreak.
Spokeswoman Amanda Brown said the payouts were calculated on a tiered system based on position and longevity. Associates who earn more than $150,000 were not eligible for the bonus. The median salary of the employees who will be receiving bonuses is roughly $42,000. She also said the $1.6 million is the amount net of taxes.
Memo Alba, a partner and senior maintenance who has been working at the real estate investment firm for almost 13 years is grateful to the company for continually embodying its core values.
“Family comes first. I love that about this company. That’s what keeps me here. They’ve always made me feel that they care not only about me, but about my family’s health and well-being. They’re always there to help,” he said.
Alba will be receiving $6,000 in bonuses, which he said will cover the remodeling of his house, a future trip to Florida with his wife and four children, and a dinner date with his spouse.
Connor said that 92 of his associates had to find alternate daycare for their children when schools across the country closed due to COVID-19. Knowing this, The Connor Group has committed to paying “unexpected childcare expenses for all employees and expanded its associate loan program.” They have also increased their loan amounts and extended the repayment period. Staff can pay back these salary advances via payroll deductions.
If any of the firm’s employees test positive for COVID-19, Connor assured them that they would be paid for their 14 and 21 days in quarantine plus the testing period. These days will not be deducted in the number of sick and vacation days they have.
“We believe in leading from the front,” Connor said. “And in trying times, that means more than just talking about the problem. It means taking action.”
In a statement made to Yahoo Finance, the CEO said that he hopes other organizations and businesses will follow suit and help people in their own way.
“We’re all in this thing together,” he said. “People need to help other people, and I would encourage other organizations and other businesses to define their own unique way to do that.”
Watch Connor’s surprise announcement and his associates’ reactions in the video below.
Larry Connor just showed the world that he’s a genuine leader – one who recognizes the value of his employees and truly cares about their welfare and needs.