The current lockout is taking its toll around the league. Just ask the Oakland Raiders. Or more importantly, the employees of the Oakland Raiders. Back on March 11,which is the night this lockout nightmare began, the organization gathered them all in a room to provide them with the doom and gloom of the financial outlook of the team. After undoubtedly depressing each and every person in the room, they also shared the small glimmer of hope. That small glimmer is called “The 2011 Plan”.
Under “The 2011 Plan”, each employee can dodge having their salary cut if they find a warm breathing body with money to sell new season tickets to. Hence, the “small” glimmer of hope.
The Raiders who had the NFL’s lowest attendance last season are requiring every employee to sell new season tickets worth 10% of what they earn during the lockout. That includes secretaries, equipment managers, coaches and executives.
“They understand the club is dealing with some issues,” Chief Executive Amy Trask says. “We’re asking them to help as part of the solution.”
Called “The 2011 Plan,” the Raiders’ incentive program runs counter to the NFL trend during a lockout in its 10th week. The plan was revealed to the staff March 11, the night the lockout began. Roughly one-third of NFL teams, in addition to the league headquarters and other entities, have reduced costs with salary cuts or furloughs.
Last week, the Miami Dolphins slashed staff salaries by 10% to 20%. Next week, the Arizona Cardinals are to begin a one-week, company-wide furlough.
Raiders staffers, meanwhile, are blitzing neighbors and community events alike albeit in a tough sales climate muddied by the threat that the lockout will extend into the season. Season tickets range from $260 to about $2,000 with a stadium club membership.
“Rather than a confiscatory approach, this is constructive and productive,” Trask says.
I think I’ll go out on a limb and say that there is no way this is constructive, productive, or has even a remote chance of working. Because frankly, the only thing worse than an inexperienced salesperson is an inexperienced salesperson trying to sell a product no one wants. And that’s exactly what Al Davis and his boys are unleashing on the people of Oakland.