Saturday, November 3, 2012
We live in a world where people, especially young people, supposedly filled with energy and zest for life, cringe when they hear the words "corporate world". True, we live in a fast paced world where the human clockworks facilitating the increasing supply and demand cycle, are more often than not forgotten and left in a perpetual state of greasiness and neglect. We live in world order where those in the top ranks squeeze and milk the lower masses for every drop of sweat and blood to fuel their economy. I agree that the corporate world is demanding and you need to have the hide of a rhino to climb the steps to success and an incisive mind to quell competition. However, where do we draw the line as to what is ethical and what isn't. Nowadays, I see alot of uncategorized "conduct" lumped into the grey area of "accepted practice" which in fact should be labelled as completely unethical. Long, slave like work hours, inhumane working conditions with little or no breaks in between, unreasonable work demands and off-the-charts catty office politics that put a damper on any productivity or positive energy... Welcome to 21st century slavery, except that the chains are invisible to the naked mind. Why do I say "mind" and not "eye"? It's because you need to have a mind to start with, to see that something about our society is not right. A society in which a man or woman wakes up at 5:30 am to rush through crazy traffic jams to a job that enriches another and does little or next to nothing for self fulfillment or enrichment is a society that needs some serious spring cleaning. Alot of my colleagues were resigned to the myth( which seems to have become accepted as a well known fact) that a young grad or a "freshie" in the corporate world would have to endure drudgery for a few years before emerging from the chrysalis of hard work and mind numbing suffering, as a success story. A few tough it out and do emerge winners but what is the price they pay for this personality changing, soul numbing process? Alot of them lose their sense of self and personalities. I wouldn't want to emerge as a success in the corporate world a few years later but be known as a failure in other areas of my life. I wouldn't want to be a cold, heartless money making machine that could not connect with loved ones nor know how to sit back enjoy and relax because the years of mindless slaving away has turned me into a robot. I have seen this happening to others and frankly speaking, something I would not wish on my worst enemy. This slow assassination of the individual in replacement of a highly productive working machine. Don't get me wrong, I am not propagating laziness or half hearted work ethics. I'm just saying the corporate world with it's so called "ethics" is headed towards the wrong direction and if this keeps on going, we will be sure to produce generation after generation of aggressive, materialistic, non thinking zombies that will not hesitate to cut another's throat in order to reach the pinnacle. What then is the solution? I think there needs to be more of a balance between the nurtured corporate instinct of bosses to "milk" their employees bone dry and the employees' duty to produce quality work worthy of their pay whilst maintaining their right to a conducive and healthy working environment, with reasonable work hours and proper pay for overtime and what not. In short, employers need to learn to share their cake and be less greedy because like it or not, the slave like working conditions in the corporate world do not make for a good long term gamble and sooner or later, they will find themselves falling flat on their faces in the mire of greed they could have avoided with temperance and balance.