Nearly 40 Employees Tattoo Their Bodies To Get A Raise

Real estate brokers with Rapid Realty get a 15 percent raise when they get a tattoo of the company logo.In the new economy, with layoffs a regular occurrence, many employees feel that no jobs are permanent. One day, your boss an be celebrating your work, but the next he can hand you a pink slip. So, would you be willing to tattoo the company's logo on your body if you were promised a 15 percent raise in return?

Rapid Reality, a New York-based residential real estate brokerage firm, made that offer to its 800 employees, and nearly 40 employees permanently inked themselves with the company logo, according to Inman News, the online real estate news site. (Rapid Realty, a company with 800 employees, does not release brokers' income but pays its brokers entirely in commission.)

"I don't see myself going anywhere, and if I have it on my arm, it'll force me to keep going and working hard," Brooklyn-based broker Adam Altman said while getting the tattoo, in a video that Rapid Realty posted to YouTube. "It's there for life. Rapid for life, yo."

The company's founder, Anthony Lolli, who came up with the idea, says the 36 employees who got the tattoo were demonstrating admirable commitment to their work. They "get a lot of respect from the other agents with the amount of commitment that they have," he told Inman News. And the company's social media accounts proudly promote the employee body-branding campaign:


In writing about the tattoos, the New York-based industry publication, The Real Deal, said the tattoos caught on thanks to Rapid's policy of giving brokers the "chance to run their own businesses," as franchises. The practice sets Rapid apart from other New York firms that have a more centralized organization and "may inspire the outsize dedication," the Real Deal said.

With the housing collapse, real estate brokers have faced a tough few years, but a few big deals in New York can give brokers a big income. According to 2012 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean wage of real estate brokers in New York City is $112,000.

What do you think? Would you tattoo yourself with your company's logo for a raise?

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Dan Fastenberg

Dan Fastenberg

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Dan Fastenberg was most recently a reporter with TIME Magazine. Previously, he was a writer for the Thomson Reuters news service's Latin America desk. He was also a reporter and associate editor for the Buenos Aires Herald while living in South America.

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Stephen Clouse

This will be funny when they all get terminated someday.

May 01 2013 at 1:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Beth

I am not averse to tattoos, having quite a few that can be hidden or shown at my leisure. I also see myself working at my job for quite some time; hell, I might even retire from my current company in 30 years or so. My company also has a relatively attractive logo. Having said those three things, would you gather that I would ever tattoo my company's logo on myself? If you said "yes," you'd be dead wrong. I like money, and I like raises - based on my performance. My performance has nothing to do with how long I can sit while some dude injects ink into the top layers of my skin. I do like my job, but I don't want to think about my place of employment every time I shower or put lotion on or whatever. Work life and home life should be separate, and permanently placing a reminder of a company that, let's face it, may or may not be here in ten years completely violates that. Also, what if one of those tattooed people went to work for the competitor? Would they have to live in fear that they were going to get "found out" if they have an errant pants leg or sleeve?

May 01 2013 at 8:05 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
lunarstruck

I think this is a great way to be able to pick out the stupid people.

May 01 2013 at 5:46 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
RB

Branded like cattle, this is on pure emoitonal blackmail and a very sad sign, even cows move to pastures new :)

May 01 2013 at 5:12 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
RB

He branded you like cattle, there are choices and experience in life, not even cows stay in the same field, my God x

May 01 2013 at 5:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
cowboys

I would do it!
I can't believe there are so many naysayers!
You get a tattoo, you die, your body decomposes...I don't understand why it's such a big deal.
What does it matter in the long run?

April 30 2013 at 4:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
janka51

all should be fired for being so stupid

April 30 2013 at 2:47 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
auramac

Fire them. Idiots.

April 30 2013 at 2:23 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
rickcraft55

Wow I find it hard to believe that they got a tattoo to get a pay raise. I never would!

April 30 2013 at 1:13 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Mike

So many ignorant and judgemental fools on here. Would I tattoo myself for the company I work for? No. Do i care if someone else does? No.

Also for the uneducated. Tattoos CAN be removed. And also dont underestimate the talent of some tattoo artists. Some of them are capable of amazing work and can easily alter, or use a previous unwanted tattoo and transforming it into something completely different. It happens all the time.

Furthermore, tattoos are a big part of several cultures and have significant personal and/or spiritual meaning. So stop being so ignorant in your views of tattoos.

April 30 2013 at 1:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Mike's comment
bbhuey4213

Yes the tats can be removed but it's expensive and painful. And they can be altered - there's a show caled worst tattoos actually devoted to showing gawdawful tats being repurposed/covered - but once again, painful and costly (tho perhaps cheaper and likely less painful than removal). I agree wholeheartedly with you that there can be great spiritual and/or personal meaning to tattoos, and that a lot of them are amazingly beautiful. Though I don't automatically discount tattoos as trashy or negative, somehow the idea of being tattooed with the company logo simply because the boss wanted them to seems off. Yeah, I know he didn't force them to get it done, but still...doesn't seem like too big a step to suppose that some boss somewhere will decide to do something similar, with the employees who opt out facing negative consequences (no bonuses, no advancement, first laid off/fired when cuts are needed).

April 30 2013 at 2:04 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
auramac

These people are idiots. And tattoos remain repulsive narcissistic displays of ignorant self-mutilation. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but to these eyes, they are all tasteless.

April 30 2013 at 2:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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