Saturday, October 28, 2006

Reward Talent and Ability -- and Not Just Seniority

That is the heart of most of our problems -- that we do things the way we do because it’s always been done that way before, and seldom because it is the best way for accomplishing our objectives. That is the corrupting influence of rewarding (valuing) seniority above all -- when it should have no place in any intelligent discussion at all.

All that should be discussed is the best way to accomplish our objectives -- regardless of how it was done in the past, since how we have done it up to now, has CAUSED the great crisis of this time. Very few see that because they are already vested in the old ways, vested in the problem -- and are no longer interested in the solution, if by that solution, it would mean the elimination of a great problem that has plagued humankind throughout time.

Unions do not have to reward seniority over everything else; they have chosen that path because by keeping those at the entry-level, low-paid relative to the high, who are often doing nothing but exploiting their status, they can point out to their employer that the lowest paid person is not making enough -- BECAUSE he is being exploited by his own fellow union members, who if everybody was paid at least the same, would be getting the generous wage the employer wants to pay ALL his employees.

When the entry-level pay is less than that of the longest employees -- it creates the problem of recruitment that many professions bemoan because those with seniority anywhere else, will be reluctant to move into another field that might desperately need their skills -- because they don’t want to start at the bottom, while they can remain at the top of the pay structure, remaining where they have a lot of seniority (status), even if they’re doing nothing useful anymore, and the job has become obsolete (meaningless) except for the press releases they write periodically, describing how the problems are getting worse -- and so they need more money, more staff, and more pay, for doing the same work or less!

If the need for teachers was real rather than artificially constricted by restricting all competent applicants -- many who are not only more qualified but often the creators of their information and discipline -- by requiring them to take inane education course that are an insult to intelligent people, the pool would be much greater. Since the standardized test scores for education graduates are collectively the lowest of those majoring in any discipline, it stands to reason that a degree in any other subject is preferable to one in education -- and should not be the only allowed educational requirement for teaching. Mastery of the subject matter should be the most highly valued -- and not education to seem knowledgeable while really not -- which is what teacher education (pedagogy) is about.

The very talented in any field are rewarded by the love for what they do -- even if the pay was equal to every other job -- because doing that, is the fulfillment and joy of who they are, and what they do. For them, the job is easier than for a less talented, skilled, experienced person -- because of those advantages, and so they do not begrudge the novice for receiving the same pay for doing that same job. Their talent and ability -- is their major advantage in life, as well as their greatest compensation -- for they have found their calling and meaning in life, instead of just thinking, that money is the only measure of their worth -- while understanding nothing useful at all.

3 Comments:

At October 28, 2006 9:19 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

I actually have experience in union organizing -- and know for a fact that unions can structure beneftis and rewards by talent and ability, or just about any way they want to.

Obviously the older unions like this status quo of unfairly advantaging themselves in this manner.

When I was in on organizing the homecare workers, I noted that the newcomers had by far the hardest experiences -- usually given the worst assignments, for which those with seniority would not take. They of course, preferred those asignments in which they didn't do anything -- so they had a built-in advantage.

In teaching, the gifted teacher has a wonderful time -- while the inexperienced, or just incompetent teachers hve a much more difficult time, and if they re wise, move on to something they are more compatible and naturally gifted at-- which should be the predominant experience of life and work in any society -- rather thn these people insisting they should be paid more than the governor because their jobs are so terrible.

Maybe they need to run for governor.

 
At October 28, 2006 9:39 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Malia Zimmerman, (HawaiiReporter.com), has questioned me in the past on whether I was a communist, in proposing equal pay for equal work -- with the difference in compensation being this job suitability and satisfaction. I’m not saying that everybody should be paid the same no matter what.

I’m just saying that the worst basis for compensation is “seniority” -- and almost any other criteria would be better. Teachers are an example in which the better ones could make more offering personalized instruction in addition to their exposure as “teachers.”

Where equal pay works very well is for government jobs -- in which teachers are claiming they are worth more than police officers, fireman, or for that matter, janitors, which is actually one of the harder jobs requiring people to actually do something -- with measurable, obvious results.

If a teacher felt that all pay being equal, they would prefer being a fireman or bus driver or garbage collector, they should be free to make that choice without penalty of starting over, at the bottom. This lack of mobility is a tremendous problem of getting manpower where it is actually needed -- quickly and easily, as society changes.

Instead, we have people still thinking they have to do one thing only for the rest of their lives -- and so fear and anxiety becomes their chief motivators and considerations in life. The ability to change, adapt, easily and without penalty, should be rewarded -- and not the source of great outrage for the healthy society.

Change is the answer, for any problem. Continuing to do the same, is the problem. The great deception is doing the same, and calling that “change.”

 
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