I almost tagged it to KPC's cool immigration discussion thread, but didnt want to run that off the rails.
Work ethic, is it fading, or are times just changing and the whole "gig" economy thing and what not just makes work look different?
I started working when I was a kid. I'd rake leaves and shovel snow for several neighbors. When deemed old enough to mow, I added that and did brush cutting for a local xmas tree farm as well. Then added working at a local "general store". In college during the early/mid 90's I started the leading edge of the business I've built and worked since 1999. It's tiny compared to many businesses. My annual gross is less than many, even small, companies need a week. But I've worked by tail off to build it and that feels great!
That's not bragging. Honestly, my mission the past two years is to reduce that, dramatically improve my efficiency and slow it down a bit. I've got more important things that need more focus (my family). But as KPC said on his thread... How many younger folks today are willing to do the dirty work?
Are they willing to grind? I'm sure some are... But on average?
Are people willing to work, or are they assuming they should: "be there" right out of school?
Curious how you all feel about work ethic and expectations that you see out there around the country today.
Are they willing to grind? I'm sure some are... But on average?"
In my opinion, there are a LOT more of them out there than you think. You just don't hear much from them because they are actually out there "grinding." I see them every day.
Quite frankly people who are out there actually building their own American dream have neither the time or the desire to b**ch about being passed by.
What impressed me the most most is my boys weren’t afraid to jump in and get the work done. My wife and I have taught them to not think about problems, but instead always to find a solution...no matter what, ALWAYS have a solution. I faked a hand cramp issue and said I couldn’t go on, so they said they wanted to finish. Their solution last night was to just work and do what Dad did. Please excuse the proud Dad moment.
I might be wrong but something tells me your boys won't have much trouble finding work and making their way in the world.
If that's the case, you've done your job.
KPC - I love what you noted, I sure hope that's the case! It's positive to think about for sure!
I’m typing this as my oldest is driving us to his Friday night job of washing dishes for the local Sportsman’s Club Fish Fry. It’s the only job there that pays, because quite honestly the job sucks. It’s the only way to get someone to do it.
I have a 19 year old daughter who works 2 jobs to have enough money to make her car and insurance payments while she goes to college. I bought her first car and she wrecked it through bad decisions. She knew she would have to buy the second one and make the payments/insurance. She works her butt off to make that happen and it has taught her a great lesson. Working two jobs and on the dean's list every semester. She will do well in life.
My second daughter is 17, she is one of the hardest working kids I know. Goes to conditioning in the AM and gymnastics in the PM, does all sorts of chores for her aging grandmother, and works part time at a local restaurant. I get notes all the time from the restaurant owner about how strong of a worker she is. She also has a 4.0 gpa. I know many of her friends that do the same.
I strongly echo what Kevin said earlier. There's a whole bunch of good kids out there keeping their heads down and working hard. They are too busy licing their lives to worry about making noise in the media or on social media chasing so called social justices. I have a lot of faith in them, however I just hope our elected officials stay out of the way of these hard working kids achieving their dreams while the slackers get the handouts and hand ups because of the noise they make!
Will, on average I'd say there are fewer kids willing to do the dirty work, and more kids willing to cling to their parents teats longer. That's what's changed the most from my perspective. My friends and I couldn't wait to graduate high school and get out from under our parent's control. Nowadays, many kids are willing to live off their parents well into their 20s and even 30s. That's just odd to me.
When my son graduated from Parris Island 12 hrs ago, his drill sergeant made a comment to me that I must have done something right with my son. I replied, he didn't have a choice. Personally, laziness is hard for me to tolerate.
How you do it is an entirely different thing. Busting your butt or breaking your back doing hard labor related things doesn't mean your work ethic is any different (or better) than someone who performs neuro-surgury, designs bridges, or manages someone's portfolio at a young adults age.
It also doesn't mean working 60 hrs a week and getting paid for 40 on a regular basis then exclaiming " they have a good work ethic".
When I was a field engineer in oil and gas services, I often worked 60 to 70 hrs a week and slept many nights in the cab of a pickup while the drilling rig ran casing and got paid for 40. That wasn't a good work ethic, that was plain dumb...
I was raised blue collar and dad pounded into my head that if your not 5 minutes early then you’re late. Also, if he wasn’t jawing at me then I was doing good. The baby boomers weren’t much for positive reinforcement. Dad always said why do I need to pat your back for doing what you’re paid to do...lol.
With that said I manage 17 millennials. Of course I started managing with my dads philosophy but you all know how that might of worked. I wouldn’t say it’s a white collar job being a biologist but most of my employees have masters degrees. I adapted a bit and stopped with being an 8-5 clock watcher because it didn’t work with them. I switch my management style up and the culture is results driven. I give them 3 things: deadline, budget, and scope. The rest of the details are up to them. As long as they deliver on time, under budget, and it’s what I asked for it’s all good. If they get done early then take Friday off. I give a lot of positive feedback for behavior I want repeated and negative feedback when necessary. I don’t care when they come to work and I don’t babysit. They like it and it works. Actually I like it because they find more ownship in the work and I don’t have to do a lot of hand holding.
I got 5 kids. One boy couldn’t find an oil dipstick on a car it his life depended on it. But he will graduate from college with a +3.5. His brother is putting front and back ford 3/4 axles on a Jeep and changing engines. I can’t even do that. He learns from YouTube...lol. I got a daughter who can kill and skin a deer with best of them and the other daughter graduated college and is totally self sufficient. They were all raise in the same house and culture. They are all over the board but they all have a good work ethic. They just each have thier own style. Go figure.
My wife now works at a well known dept store, goes in early, stays late trying to get her job done often off the clock. Technically she is a supervisor, (although they give it a different name), but she runs everything from cash registers to doing the manager's job (since that lady takes a lot of time off). One of her duties is hiring. I cannot tell you the number of times she has hired someone and they do not even bother to show up for their first day on the job. Quite often others quit after working there a while without any notice and often without even bothering to tell anyone they quit, they just don't bother to show up. That blows my mind. The last time I quit a job was 19 years ago last month and I gave them 2 weeks notice and offered to come in during Christmas break to help out, (I was leaving a hardware store to start teaching school in the middle of the year).
Some of the classes I've taught in the last few years have given me the opportunity to talk about interviews, work ethics, and being a good worker in general. I wish I could spend more time on those subjects to help the kids learn, but it really needs to start long before I get them in junior high and high school, it needs to start at home.
What's sad though, is that they should be the NORM, and not the exception. I, like many of the other posters here, grew up doing these exact same kind of things and it was just what you did. Pick, shovel, skin, shovel poop, build fence, sweat, freeze, get wet...whatever had to be done. It builds character!