Category Archives: Work - Page 2

Your Job Sucks

And your boss doesn’t care.

Enjoy Your Workday

You would have to work 24 hours a day, five days a week at a minimum-wage job, to convince Mitt Romney that you’re responsible.

Enjoy. Also enjoy the thousands of dollars in payroll taxes you’ll be paying that Romney considers so negligible that they don’t even count as taxes. And your state and local taxes like property tax and sales tax….

Fed Rewards Companies For Keeping Unemployment High

Or, as the newspapers put it, “Fed pledges to keep interest rates low.”

The catch is that the Fed is now saying they will maintain their ultra-low interest rates (as low as 0%) as long as unemployment is above 6.5%. The problem with this is that the two are unrelated; low interest rates don’t drive employment. (I know, the theory is that with easy credit available businesses will expand and hire more employees. In fact, they won’t do that because there’s no demand right now, and won’t be until consumers have money in their pockets.)

What this actually does is provide businesses with monetary compensation for not hiring people. “Keep unemployment high,” says the Fed, “and we’ll keep loaning you money at absurdly low rates, which you can use to buy back your stock, drive up the price, and cash in your executive stock options. Cha-ching!”

The commoners who are unemployed or unemployed? Yeah, fuck them.

Hiring Cultural Fits

It seems that “Hiring for cultural fit” is a thing in the workplace now.

“I once hired a woman who really didn’t have the right background or experience for the job, but who I hit it off with during the interview,” says Rebecca Grossman-Cohen, a marketing executive at News Corp. (NWS). “And because we got along so well, I was able to train her easily, and she ended up doing great things for us.”

I’m not a degreed and highly trained human resources professional, but it seems to me that ‘hiring people I like whether they can do the job or not’ is an ancient tradition in the workplace. They’ve just come up with a new buzzword to make hiring your buddy over someone more skilled sound like a wise business strategy.

[Update: 14/01/13] A first hand account of an extreme case of hiring for ‘cultural fit.’ Talked to someone who got to screen applicants for a consulting company, back in the 1990s. One of the managers took her aside and said, “We want people like him,” pointing out one of their consultants. Fit, clean-cut, white guys. No blacks, she was told. No women. No guys with beards, no fat people, no smokers. Just people who looked like that guy.

I visited that place once, and was struck by how everyone looked alike. I literally could not tell most of them apart. They stuck to their standards.

The company doesn’t exist anymore.