Chapter 109: Extreme Method
Nyoi-Bo Studio Nyoi-Bo Studio
The man with a pointy mouth and monkey cheeks refuted Xiao Luo’s statement, “Commodities and housing prices are so high nowadays. Besides, we all have our families to think of. Who’s willing to squeeze into public housing with strangers? Who doesn’t wish to have their own home? The company earns hundreds of millions every year, so how does that justify the little we’re being paid?”
Most of the employees with wavering hearts were affirmed of their beliefs and supported the statement by cheering out loud.
“Yeah, housing prices are so high, and yet our salaries are so low. We’ve had to tighten our belts for decades just to buy a house. Who can live like that?”
“Can’t we frontline workers demand anything? Do you think that we, the workers, deserve to be squeezed into public housing?”
“We are firmly against this!”
The crowd was indignant. They felt like they were at a protest rally, continually shouting and raising their fists.
“F*ckin hell. I’ve seen shameless people before, but I’ve never seen such brazenness!”
Zhang Dashan couldn’t bear to watch any longer. He rolled up his sleeves and wanted to go after the man with the pointy mouth and monkey cheeks. With his temper, he was incapable of tolerating any of this.
Xiao Luo reached out to stop him. If he couldn’t handle a spat like this, as the company’s boss, he wouldn’t be left with any dignity whatsoever. With stern eyes, he looked at the crowd and sneered, “What does real estate have to do with me? Am I a real estate agent or the director of the National Land Resources Administration? Are you really blaming the company because you can’t afford a house? So, if you wish to buy anything in the future, let’s say a car or a villa, is the company supposed to pay those bills for you as well?”
This chain of rhetorical questions silenced the protestors. They were unable to think of anything to say that would refute these claims.
“You are dismissed now. Return to your posts, and I’ll let this go. Otherwise, be prepared to bear the consequences!” Two rays of frost jetted out from Xiao Luo’s eyes. When his temper flared, he wasn’t a nice person to negotiate with.
Many hearts thumped intensely, and the workers’ resolve flagged. After all, the employees at Luo’s Workshop weren’t treated all that badly. If they pulled out, they would have to start afresh, and their salaries would again return to the lowest tier.
The man with a pointy mouth and monkey cheeks shouted hurriedly, “Don’t be scared! We are many in number! He wouldn’t dare fire so many people. Otherwise, Luo’s Workshop will shut down tomorrow!”
His words enlightened the crowd. Yeah, what were they afraid of? Luo’s Workshop was nothing like its former self, and it was struggling at the brink of extinction. If the factory halted production for a day, then it would surely be a fatal blow to the business. Xiao Luo would never dare to do anything like that to them.
A boisterous voice sounded, “He’s right! There are so many of us here, so why are we afraid of one man?! We will strike unless he raises our salaries and bonuses!”
“We are against the company stealing our hard-earned money!” the man with a pointy mouth and monkey cheeks raised his fist and shouted.
The others yelled in unison, “We are against the company stealing our hard-earned money!”
The scene abruptly plunged into chaos.
All of the store managers and department heads were looking at Xiao Luo. The faces of some were eager to watch the show, while others had their eyebrows knitted or were expressionless. The people present displayed various reactions.
Sun Jian’nan was worried about Xiao Luo. He hoped that Xiao Luo could handle this crisis smoothly and calm the workers down. But judging from the situation, the outcome wasn’t looking optimistic at all.
Xiao Luo snorted and said regretfully, “I’ve given you all an opportunity to do the right thing, but you don’t know how to cherish it. Do you think that I’m not bold enough to act against you? Fine then. Lin Chongdong!” Xiao Luo raised his voice suddenly. His tone carried the solemnity of a soldier.
“Yes, Mr. Xiao?” said Lin Chongdong.
Xiao Luo pointed to the crowd below and said, “Dismiss all of these people and never hire them again!”
Each and every word knocked on the workers’ souls like a giant bell.
The department heads and store managers were all startled. They’d never expected Xiao Luo to adopt such an extreme stance. Although the workers were at fault, many leaders would focus on consoling them and tempting them with benefits. Never would they do what Xiao Luo was doing. Namely, dismissing everyone to solve the problem.
Xu Guansong was anxious as he hurriedly advised, “Mr. Xiao, this action isn’t appropriate. A mass dismissal will upset the balance of the company’s workforce.”
Li Zimeng, who had an hourglass figure, also strode forward and said, “We just received a big order from an old client a few days ago. If we dismiss all of these workers, we’ll never be able to deliver the order on time. Aside from having to pay a hefty compensation, we will also lose an old and loyal customer forever.”
Xiao Luo ignored her and stared at Lin Chongdong chillingly. “Didn’t you hear me?”
Under his gaze, Lin Chongdong shivered instinctively.
“Yes. I will tell my colleagues in the HR department to dismiss all of them at once.”
“Go. I want to see their dismissal reports within half a day,” Xiao Luo deadpanned, denying the strikers any sympathy. Sure enough, those people had crossed a line with him.
Lin Chongdong felt as awful as he possibly could. Although a chore like this had no technical requirements and was easy, he had to prepare more than 500 copies. Having to settle and write the reports in half a day was indeed stressful. However, he also felt immense satisfaction. Xiao Luo’s vigorous and stern conduct had incited some excitement and enthusiasm in his dull eyes.
“Mr. Xiao, you can’t do this to us! I don’t want a raise! I don’t want a raise anymore!”
Seeing that Xiao Luo truly meant what he said, the workers were flustered. They’d never expected their new chairman, who looked so kind and friendly, to bully them and be so ruthless in his conduct. He was actually bold enough to fire them all.
The workers were now all scared. Where else would they find such a great job? If they couldn’t work here, then the houses they’d be planning to buy a few years down the line would probably have to wait for another decade. Did they still want to establish families or not?
“Don’t be afraid, he’s just trying to scare us. Without us, how can he keep Luo’s Workshop going? Besides, Luo’s Workshop is already at the edge of collapse. It is only a matter of time before Taste Buds devours the company. We won’t have our jobs much longer even if we stay,” the man with a pointy mouth and monkey cheeks said raucously to appease the crowd.
Xiao Luo looked at the man with a smile. If there weren’t so many people here, he would’ve stepped on that man like an ant.
He ordered with composure, “Security, expel the fired workers at once!’
Ruthless and decisive.
The security personnel who had been maintaining order earlier on was infuriated. No matter how he thought about things, he felt that these workers were deliberately provocative. After receiving Xiao Luo’s instructions, the guards unlaced the black iron rods at their waists and reformed into a human wall. Then, they pushed the protestors out of the factory through the main entrance. Those who refused to cooperate were instantly greeted with rods.
The five hundred workers were flustered, utterly flustered. This wasn’t a threat, it was a genuine dismissal and eviction.
Various bawls pleading to the heavens rang out: “I’m not leaving. I’m not on strike anymore. This is all my fault. I want my job back!”
Even though they all felt that the Luo’s Factory was in wasn’t in as good of straights as before, the frontline workers’ treatment was hardly abysmal. Subconsciously, they still had faith in Luo’s Workshop. They did not believe that the company would crumble.
Luo Qi, the head of R&D, wanted to plead for the workers but was blocked by a wave of Xiao Luo’s hand.
“In my estimation, there are only good employees and bad employees. Evidently, these are not good employees. People say that a new broom sweeps clean. Although I’m not getting rid of everyone, some trash still has to go.”
These words undoubtedly pushed the employees into utter despair.
“He must be trying to scare us! He wouldn’t dare fire us all! He can’t handle the consequences!”
The one who shouted this was again the man with a pointy mouth and monkey-like cheeks. However, now he sounded much less firm.