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acting your wage

🔗 Your Coworkers Are Less Ambitious; Bosses Adjust to the New Order - A long piece on “acting your wage,” full of interviews and surveys. (1) it seems like half of the people are still interested in being “go-getters,” (2) I mean, if you’re not getting paid for work, you’re getting ripped off, (3) with the huge wealth inequality gap, management has obviously been taking money from all these “go-getters” who’ve been working for free and handing their cash (or “value” in the form of share price) over to the wealthy…so…yeah?

From the article:

In a November survey of more than 3,000 workers and managers by software firm Qualtrics, 36% said their overall career ambitions had waned over the past three years, compared with 22% who said their ambition had increased. Nearly 40% said work had become less important to them in the past three years, while 25% said it had grown more important, according to researchers at Qualtrics, which provides software to businesses to evaluate customer and employee experiences.

And then this from Wikipedia on wealth inequality in the US:

Federal Reserve data indicates that as of Q4 2021, the top 1% of households in the United States held 32.3% of the country’s wealth, while the bottom 50% held 2.6%. In recent decades, wealth inequality has substantially increased in the United States. From 1989 to 2019, wealth became increasingly concentrated in the top 1% and top 10% due in large part to corporate stock ownership concentration in those segments of the population; the bottom 50% own little if any corporate stock.

(Also, this.)

So, at some point working above your compensation, unpaid overtime and the stress that goes with it becomes a lottery. You’re hoping that you’ll somehow beat out almost everyone else to be wealthy. Instead, you know, that 1% could stop capturing all that free work and be more fair, paying people for all the work and value they provide.


Meanwhile, he’s some thinking about engineering satisfaction in what you do. For an individual, I’d rephrase “need” as “gotta get paid,” not thinking about what the company needs. Also, a good form to bootstrap and get past the impossible first question “what do you want?”

@cote@hachyderm.io, @cote@cote.io, @cote