The voice of Amanda

Calculating my worth

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I work for a corporation. It sucks. I sometimes have to remind myself that this ugly corporation is not an entity completely in itself- there are people behind it making decisions and setting the tone for the entire business. Is it better to envision faces of average schmucks sitting behind their desks handing down executive orders rather than some omnipotent robot? I don’t know. I guess when I pull back the curtain and come face to face with the stark truth rather than a wizard, it pains me to see the cold side of business.

What am I to the company? I am a slightly higher than bottom level employee with good work performance. Do I expect the business to bend over backwards to make me feel warm and fuzzy? No, but it sure would be nice to feel like a person rather than a replaceable cog in the machine. It is difficult to do the best job possible when there are no thanks for good work, only the threat of write-ups and dismissal for imperfection.

Everyone knows our economy is depressing. What else is entirely depressing is the rising disparity inching its way between hardworking citizens. While business has been bad, plenty of CEOs have been doing just fine. Some have even made money from the heartache of others. I was told a story about a business owner who used the economy as a reason to tank the jobs of employees and have the remaining staff pick up the extra work for no extra pay. That guy is driving a Lamborghini. It’s stuff like this that gets me.

The message that everyone is created equal and everyone has a chance at a future has been trickling away year by year. The system we have in place is setting children up for disappointing adulthoods. We nurture, protect and tell them how wonderful/special/unique they are, giving seemingly endless chances to help them feel good about themselves. They are told they can be anything they want if they try! For previous generations, making it through college offered the chance at a better life. Boom. Then comes workplace reality. Lots of people have degrees, and suddenly you are filling shoes performing tasks that others might be able to do faster, better and cheaper than you. Supervisors won’t be shy saying that, either.

(If your dad or mom invented something profitable, acted in something somewhat decent, climbed the corporate ladder or filled a stadium with adoring fans, this is probably not the case.)

I know this is getting dark and maybe sort of preachy. There is a point in there. Being an adult has its select perks, but working for a corporation blows. I’m going to watch Office Space and destroy some office equipment now.


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