Saturday, October 27, 2007

Attitudes Toward Work

When I first came to Jordan, I heard people say how much money they TAKE in reference to their salary. I found this a strange concept because in the states we always refer to a salary as how much we MAKE. I think that the meaning is as different as the words. If you take money, it means deducting from a total. As if there is one large pie which is to be divided. The reference is static, sterile, and limited. If you make money, it means you are creating something, adding to, or expanding the limits. I don’t think this is a just a difference in language but rather a difference in attitudes toward work.

I have also heard from some that the most desirable job would be one where money is paid for doing nothing. What is that - no dirty hands, no responsibility, no accountability, and no strain on brains or body? When young people aspire to this kind of employment, I’m amazed and wonder if they were raised to think that the world owes them a good life.

By contrast I’ve met young Americans who boast about their 24 – 7 schedule. They are proud that their work is so demanding that they work 24 hours seven days a week. I can’t understand how one would willingly deny himself quality of life. This, too, is as much without balance as the uninspired, bored approach of getting paid for doing nothing.

I question the actual state of unemployment in Jordan. I know that both my son and my husband can’t find people to work. The range of openings is vast: simple cleaners, housekeepers, waiters, secretaries, accountants, telephone operators, and the list goes on. There are technical training schools that have places for several thousand students. It would be interesting to know if all of these places actually get filled. I think something is out of kilter here, and maybe a lot of unemployment has to do with attitudes towards work.

ASH

4 Comments:

Anonymous kinzi said...

ASH, agreed. What an interesting word comparison.

Saturday, October 27, 2007  
Anonymous Qwaider قويدر said...

This part is really amazing
"I have also heard from some that the most desirable job would be one where money is paid for doing nothing. What is that - no dirty hands, no responsibility, no accountability, and no strain on brains or body? When young people aspire to this kind of employment, I’m amazed and wonder if they were raised to think that the world owes them a good life."

It's really sad when the workforce. The young and energetic people are in this lame, dormant state. Seeking employment for the title not for the knowledge or achievement. Yet they complain so much about the conditions. And how they're not progressing in life! And of course damn the country for it's limited resources!

Good subject to post about .. Thank you

Saturday, October 27, 2007  
Blogger eyad said...

actually, i respect your opinion, but i really disagree, i have been living here for more than 2 decades,28 years, and i have met many lazy people, and many others who are willing to work, and who i know v. well that they are energetic,i can't deny that there is some attitude (they don't want to work hard), but on the other hand, i'm one of those who was discouraged to work hard, once i read bad system makes bad people, so please don't only blame people, but the business environment,employers, etc, all that contributes to what we are here, and (here) i'm not just blaming, as if we are passive and we are not responsible, but what i try to say here, is don't just see one part of the problem and forget the other, why do you think scientists and well educated people immigrate to western countries and become very productive there, we have devoted and active people as in everywhere, in the world, when they are there they are productive, when they are here they are not.
thanks, for listening,

Sunday, October 28, 2007  
Blogger joladies said...

Eyad, thanks for your astute and pertinent comment on my posting. You are absolutely correct. I'm sure we all know Jordanians who were destined for a mediocre career but when they worked abroad they became part of an atmospere that allowed them to tap into their potential and they soared. I appreciate your adding your insight to our blog.
ASH

Monday, October 29, 2007  

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