Two people have sent me info about how Microsoft tried to make people repay an overpayment and then changed their minds.
I suppose I’m supposed to be horrified that a big, mean, evil empire like Microsoft would ask for erroneously paid money back.
Let’s reverse the situation. Suppose Microsoft underpaid severance (which, in actuality, they did to some people) and that person wrote a letter asking them to please pay up. Would we be horrified that that person had the audacity to ask such a question? After all, Microsoft is a publicly traded company, which means it’s owned by humans! Some of them grandmothers on fixed incomes. In fact, I’m sure some of them are great grandmothers with no money for new dentures! The horror of it all!
I think I’ve used up my exclamation mark quota for a while.
I understand the reason why Microsoft reversed itself. I understand that it wasn’t worth the public affairs nightmare. What I don’t get is why people get so outraged at this.
Someone in payroll or HR made a mistake. It wasn’t vindictive. It wasn’t mean spirited. It was a mistake. And they were within legal rights to attempt to rectify the mistake.
I would probably have sent a similar letter. I also would have ended with that letter and not pursued it any further if the person had balked. That isn’t worth the time, money and effort.
But no company should be vilified for asking for a mistake to be fixed.