Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Pride In One's Work

Even I, a dyed in the wool lower-middle management clone, even I, cynical bitter and twisted as I am, even I, safe in the knowledge that what I do does not matter, try to do things properly.

Some of it is stubborn pig ignorance – some of it habit but mainly it is a perverse pride. Even if everyone else just cuts and pastes their reports from articles on wikipedia, even if most of the data they produce is meaningless garbage spilled out from some data base that bares no resemblance to reality, even if no one reads what I write and what I do is utter pointless, I will do it properly.

Maybe not well, or perfectly, but you will get what you asked for/need. Should some one need the last quarters results in a pie chart, and run down of the critical issues since the last meeting and the outstanding testing for a project done by Tuesday, they will get it.

Is it is partly my own insecurity –not in my job but emotionally – that I do not want to let people down. Partly that I am honest. I did sign a contract to do this and I will do this. And I think that is no bad thing.

So many other people do not seem to care if what they do is wrong, poor or faulty. The utterly selfishness, lack of pride in one’s work is breathtaking. Having visited hundreds of factories and workshops, and dealt with a great many builders, electricians, plumbers and roofers I am still amazed by how they treat their work.

Slap dash



Things don’t work, or are broken or so poorly done as to be nearly, but not quite useless.

So is this just a rant then?

Well no. I think it is cultural thing. I think the lack of respect, especially in the UK (note to Americans : its is the small selection of islands, off Europe, you use as an airbase) for trades people and anyone not in a suit and tie and “in charge” means that no one has any respect to what they do as "work" anymore

It is all about money. Ok the bad old days of “loadsamoney” is gone, but there is a hangover from it. Commercial gain and capital is all that matters.

No one reads History, or English Literature for the joy of it at University. They want jobs, so they study management and try and get on "Grad Schemes". And why wouldn't they? ho wants to get in 20 grand of debt studying Elizabethan culture and the rise of the Roman Empire, to then work in a call centre?

Doing a job well does not matter anymore. Even what it achieves does not matter. What matters is how much you are paid and how rich you are. Period.

Added to this that consequences of doign a job badly are nill (anyone know anybody fired for incompetence? Aside from big executives resigned after being caught defrauding the company, making a complete mess years running).

Doing it well, and being respected by your peers for it does not happen.

We judge success and happiness by the size of bank balance, house, car and flash clothes.

The Protestant Work ethic is dead.
The Fast Buck is how we are.

A Boy Running

Arms and legs pumping
Head lolling
From side to side,
As he is running
No longer fast
Not with any speed
But he keeps moving
Filled with the need

To escape
To flee
To evade

Running on emotion
All energy spent
Tears mingling
With the sweat
Legs heavy
Lungs bursting for breath
A boy running

He hasn’t got there yet

25 May 2007