Friday, April 27, 2012
The Work World Growing Harsher Every Minute
There are some nice bosses out there, ones that look out for their employees. I had a couple who helped me prior to when I was disabled help me in career advancement. That is the way it is supposed to work, while one works for a boss, they can serve as a mentor too for a younger employee. With one, she respected my work, entertained my ideas and advanced my creativity. That would be my favorite job, sadly it would be lost to funding issues from on high. She was such a great lady, I tried looking her up to reconnect but was unable to find her. Some may even make long lasting friendships with coworkers. There are bosses who will reach out to employees, and will work with them and who care about people but what happens in a world where faceless mega-lith corporations with minions of bean-counters who never see the people that are harmed by their policies?
When you get a chance, this may sound odd, but check out the obituaries sometime, look for people who range in age from 70-100+, and then for those who had careers, notice something about their life story, and notice how long the jobs lasted. I did this some months ago, and noticed several had the same jobs or better said worked for the same business for 25-30-40 years. And their lives were well-rewarded for it. How often does that happen anymore? Between all the lay-offs, business changes and more, younger people cannot depend on having jobs of any longevity. How does buy a house or build a community of any sort when one has to scramble to find a new job [often in a new location] every few years? Some start jobs thinking it will be great and then 5 years later face a lay-off or a boss who loves to fire people. Does global competition, explain the new lack of stability out there? Or something else? The relationships seem different, there seems to be no loyalty anymore. Why isn't anyone finally saying look this globalism experiment is destroying us, or that bigger isn't necessarily better anymore?
It seems years ago relationships mattered more, and now workers are just seen as cogs in the wheel, disposable at any minute. Do any of these bosses who fire slews of people on a bad hair day even sit down and think about their actions? Do they care that the man they are sending out to chronic unemployment or underemployment has a disabled wife to take care of? How about those who have families or aged parents to support? Do they care, that they are basically taking away people's stabilities, community, and taking a wrecking sledge hammer to the financial foundations of people's lives? With small business owners who see their businesses almost sliding into oblivion some of those decisions are not made with ease, but then with companies that take down a factory in America to send it to Mexico or choose to outsource jobs, it seems conscience about these things has ended.
Worse yes, some of the bosses have now started tossing people away, who have simply grown older, and thinking they can get a cheaper deal out of a healthy 20 year old, get rid of the older workers, and their more expensive health insurance and retirements to come. We know some of them may be feeling immense pressure from the top with THEIR BOSSES yelling at them to make profit margins higher, but what has happened out there? One thing some business will have employees work with old out-dated technology but then blame them for the constant break downs. How much greed is running some of these terrible decisions?
I've seen too many loved ones, with the financial moorings of their life absolutely destroyed. This includes friends who had a boss fire them for ONE mistake, one mistake among months or years of perfect articles, papers, phone calls and hours of work. It seems some of these people no longer desire that human beings work for them but perfect robots. Don't any of them face their own mistakes and realize all human beings make errors? Didn't they ever get a break? What has made people become like this?
One sees this kind of mentality in corporate culture, where conformity now seems to be the rule. What is going to happen to American innovation or creativity when they are so busy making everyone THE SAME? Does anyone out there, ever wonder why corporations more and more seem to demand more of the same personalities, and more of the same look? Some make a nod to "diversity" but do we really see this? Could your grandmother go get a corporate job tomorrow if she needed one and even had the skills?How many overweight people get high level corporate jobs even though the obesity rate in America runs at 70 percent? How come the smallest physical and/or emotional difference now seems to shut people out of the running? Why am I reading on some websites, that if someone is unfortunate to get laid off or fired from a job in their mid 40s and over, that they may never work a full time job again? Who is making these decisions and why?
Here too, it seems instead of just getting a job done, you have "the right personality" or they will think of a reason to just throw you to the wolves. When did the work place get so saturated with personality games. Everyone today knows the horrors of office politics where backstabbing seems to be the name of the game. Why is that happening? Yes I know not every office is a updated twisted high school of never grown up "Heathers" waiting to stab you in the back but it's wide spread enough, that people often face the work day with trepidation, stress and fear. Wouldn't productivity be higher if one got to go to work, not feeling like they were going to be fed to the wolves? Have companies even faced this problem?
The Squawker remembers her last job from years ago, before she was disabled, she was getting sick, and getting a write-ups for going bald. Because she could not afford a wig [having an extra large head, none fit] due to the low wages and endless bus fares and bosses would tell her to remove scarfs and hats, due to an illness, she was losing patches of hair on her head. One day while in the bosses office, she would see a write-up for "poor hygiene", she showered everyday and did her best to hide her problems, for daring to have thinning hair and bald spots!
This is part of what I am referring to, among this story, I can list those who have lost jobs, simply because the new boss didn't *like* their personality, because of who they were friends with, because of their beliefs that differed from the bosses. Do people want workers or do they want to own people's souls too? While one can understand people losing jobs for being drugged out, not showing up to work, lying and total full blown insubordination, most people I know lost jobs for far more draconian and dare I say PETTY reasons. It seems the reasons are endless for some power-hungry employers to just toss someone in the proverbial trash can and future homelessness.
The school system can't even match the punishments they are ready to dole out, a school principal never could lord over the worse teenage bully and druggie, the punishment the work world is ready to give an adult employee which basically is the shame, stigma and horrors of poverty. How many Americans could have seen the entire tapestry of their lives change from JUST ONE GOOD JOB. How many now saw the whole thing unravel by seeing the jobs taken away? Now that the country seems focused on blaming the poor for it's problems instead of the trillions for wars and bail-outs, the corporately owned [see how that works?] media influences people to demand that worker's rights be chipped away. This is why some of these companies felt no conscience and really got only little outcry when they started saying, HA, if you've been out of work TOO LONG, by our rules, you've lost the job Lotto and no more job for you! That more then anything has shown the low levels that corporate culture has sunk to. How is that fair, or even reasonable or even moral?
Years ago, someone could be a little shy, or have a few minor health problems but still be able to make a living, as long as one stayed sober and put in some honest labor, you weren't relegated to Mom's basement or a life time on skid row. If one was at a certain level of health and willing to work hard, there was some work for you, and you didn't have to every minute facet of your personality analyzed to pull it off. When businesses were smaller and everything wasn't owned by mega-corporations, a person could easier make their way in the world. There wasn't endless HOOPS to jump through. One had more freedom to make their own way too.
And speaking of hoops, why does searching for a job have to be the horrible process they have made it to be? The resumes, the cover letters, the endless printing of letters, and copying or applying online never to get a response. Even the old rules of at least pretending to be polite have ended. How are people supposed to feel when they send resume after resume in, never to even get a neutral polite response? Why is so much hiring now by committees, looking to see who will conform more rather then seeing who may do the best job? They've turned getting a job into a science project from hell. So wonder many unemployed Americans have given up. One thing I want to know, is how come there isn't one boss or one company that has given an alternative to the usual resume wheel of drudge? Maybe they are out there and I just do not know. Whatever happened to having a little independence and giving someone a chance for maybe even some new experiences? It seems things are growing far too regimented.
If you are a boss and reading this, I hope you are one of the nice ones. Sure hold a line so you are not taken advantage of, and you do have to attend to the survival side of your business, but keep the human side of things in mind as well.
If you are a worker, try and do the job you are being paid for the best you can, but seek to understand the human side of things as well. Do not verbally or otherwise abuse your co-workers or engage in combat office politics, give people a break!
I hope one day more people will speak out about certain things being broken in the employment world. People deserve better.--The Squawker