My father worked as a school teacher for 32 years. He worked for the same school district for all those years. Although he held many jobs over that time span, he worked for the same employer. Although he probably doesn’t consider himself wealthy, the job was reliable, the benefits sufficient and the pension fantastic. I’m sure, on some level, he feels a sense of loyalty to his employer of 32 years.
Throughout my career I’ve been treated quite well by most of my employers. I’ve worked at companies with 5 employees to several with over 50,000. I’ve felt more loyalty towards the smaller companies. They felt like family. In those times I’ve certainly felt loyalty towards my managers and employees. That’s not a surprise because I’ve searched out opportunities to work for good people ahead of how big or popular the company may be.
Not so much with the larger companies. Working for Microsoft I felt like Z from the movie Antz. Just a tiny cog in a massive machine that’s easy to replace. Here’s your marching orders.
With higher numbers of unemployment, business owners know they’re in the catbird seat when it comes to hiring, promotions and raises. We’ve gone through the flip side of this equation where employees jumped from job to job like free agents searching for the highest bidder. Both sides have treated the other like a disposable partnership at times.
Eventually the jobs will come back. The pendulum will swing back towards the employees. I hope both employees and business owners will exercise mutual respect for each other during economic prosperity as well as economic downtown.