by: Jeff Garson on November 30th, 2013 | No Comments »
Work is so important. For most of us, it takes up the best hours of the great majority of our days. And most everything else gets organized around it.
When it comes to Radical Decency – being habitually decent to our selves, others, and the world – this is a big problem. Why? Because, at work, the culture’s predominant values – compete and win, dominate and control – are typically rehearsed with unrestrained virulence. And there it sits, at the center of our lives, a constant impediment to our ability to give ourselves over to more decent ways of living.
While no one is exempt from this unforgiving equation, it is, without question, much tougher on people with salaried and hourly jobs. In this blog, I address the special challenges these people face and offer a number of strategies to deal with them.
The problem for salaried and hourly workers begins with the most basic notions of freedom. While we seldom think of it in this way, they are, effectively, indentured servants. They work from 9 to 5 – or longer if the boss demands it – get an hour for lunch, 2 vacation weeks, and “x” number of sick days. That’s it. No choice.
Compounding the situation is the highly authoritarian nature of the organizations for which they work. In the workplace, supervisors have enormous control over workers’ lives. And so long as they are making money for the company and are not causing problems for their bosses, their power is virtually unchecked.