Broadcasting house had an interesting discussion about employment and retirement. It would seem that people my age who are not millionaires will not be able to retire.
So obviously the solution is to enjoy your work more! sounds obvious doesn’t it ? Why didn’t we think of it before….oh sorry…my supervisor has just given me a written warning for blogging when I should be working….
It’s a tough enough call just to turn-up in the morning and do your
job, without being asked to try and enjoy it – let alone introduce some
creative essence into it. How do you do that in a call center when every
time you crack a smile your supervisor interjects because she thinks you
must be slacking off.
Yes it would be nice to downshift, and change our culture so that work
becomes more enjoyable. But there is a very simple, fundamental problem
with this; We live in a capitalist world. The *only* job of a board of
directors is to increase profits. After you have ‘downsized’ and
‘streamlined’ and ‘relocated to Indonisia, sacking all of your previous
staff’ there will come a time when you run out of resources to exploit –
then what ? Well, perhaps the staff are spending too much time
‘excercising their creativity’ and not sewing trainers ?
If we are really serious about making life generally better for people in
the world before they die, I think we need to do more than have group-
hugs, footballs in the office and regular staff bowling trips.
So if we can agree that any change a single company can make to make
it’s employee’s lives richer is only avoiding the real problem, then there
is something that would help in the short term:
Working from home.
Someone mentioned it, but it was passed over.
What would happen in London if a third of the employees worked half of
their weeks at home ?
* The transport problems would be solved.
* Pollution would decrease.
* People don’t have the stress of getting to and from work and so would
work more effectively.
* People could have ‘true’ flexitime – being able to spend their days as
they wish – as long as the work gets done who cares ?
* People would be more effective and more relaxed when *at* work.
The technology to do this exists and is affordable. Even more affordable
if the government gave incentives for companies to allow their staff to
work at home.