"Much good work is lost for the lack of a little more." ~Edward H. Harriman




My mom recently sent an email out to our family that I would like to share with you...
"Every morning on my walk, a little red V.W. rolls by me filled with newspapers. Behind the wheel sits a woman dressed in shorts, a t-shirt and a baseball cap. Her eyes are on her work. As she drives down the road, she skillfully throws newspapers through the front-seat windows, both sides. To my amazement, every paper lands right smack in the middle of the recipient's driveway. The little V.W. zigzags from the right, to the left and the papers fly out. In all this activity, she still has time to wave to me. Even more incredible - on the weekend (as the papers are bigger) she drives a big black pick-up truck. Down the road she comes, the truck brimming with papers and her zigzag routine. It would be a delight for you to see. She is truly an example of how to do your job. She needs to conduct an in-service. I admire her work ethics."


When I first read this little story, I agreed with my mom. This woman truly shows good work ethic. But shouldn't this always be the case? Isn't she merely doing her job? She is fulfilling her job description. Her job is to deliver the paper, which she is doing. Shouldn't that be the case? Shouldn't we all be fulfilling our job description, completing our assigned duties? It isn't as if she is going the extra mile or doing something more than she is supposed to. She is doing her job.

I think it is a little sad that we admire someone or gain an inordinate amount of respect for someone because they merely do their job. What does that say about the average newspaper delivery person in my mom's neighborhood or yours? Should extra notice be given to someone that does their job? Granted the lady in the little red bug did her job well..., it is an interesting question.



Of course, everyone likes to get a pat on the back every once in a while and a thank you for a job well done. How well do you do your job? Are you happy to zigzag your way through your day, sometimes missing a driveway or do you hit it straight on, no matter the weight of your work or how far you have to go to get it there?
Perhaps you just show up. I wonder what they say about you.




by rayannethorn



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Ahh yes Rayanne, but she added that little bit of extra value, by being friendly and waving at your mum. Going above and beyond the call of duty, is what gets you noticed. If she hadn't have waved and smiled, would your mum have noticed?
The sad (and wondrous) thing in this world is that one gets credit for just showing up. Even so, it's hard for alot of people to even do that.

Rayanne, does your mom really love hard work or is that what she had to do in her life (as a woman) to stay on the playing field? I have my opinions on that subject (what women have to do/have had to do vs what men have to do to achieve success).

"Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." ~ Thomas Edison
You know, I have always worked in an industry that is predominately female (retail) and I have never witnessed a female having to work harder than an man in order to be promoted, earn merits for their achievements, etc. I realize there are some industries where that may be more common, but for the most part I think your statement is a gross generalization between the sexes. In my company there are as many women on the executive team as men. In my company there are as many women in management roles as men. In my company there are balance issues that we offer to women AND men who have day care issues and running around issues because the spouse/significant partner can't always be an equal partner for those types of tasks. In my company there are NO equity issues in pay between female and male workers. And that has been the case for pretty much all the companies I have worked for over the past 25 years. We equally support all of our employees based on merit and performance. I think there are many companies like ours that do the same. And there are many companies like ours that have been doing this for many, many years.

I'm not arguing that sexual discrimination doesn't exist. I'm not arguing that it might sometimes be more difficult for a female to move up the ladder, but this is not the late 60's, or the 70's. By the time we hit the 80's, it's been my experience that there are opportunities for everyone based on their willingness to be flexible and pliable for that next step up the ladder. And a large majority of companies out in the work place do accommodate schedules in order for both sexes to deal with the day to day aspects of family life.

The reason we're so impressed with people who "work hard" is not because they are working hard, but because they have joy and pleasure and a good attitude about how they do it. That's what mostly impresses us. We all have work ethics. If we didn't we'd be fired on a frequent basis.

Maureen Sharib said:
The sad (and wondrous) thing in this world is that one gets credit for just showing up. Even so, it's hard for alot of people to even do that.

Rayanne, does your mom really love hard work or is that what she had to do in her life (as a woman) to stay on the playing field? I have my opinions on that subject (what women have to do/have had to do vs what men have to do to achieve success).

"Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." ~ Thomas Edison
I think your statement is a gross generalization between the sexes...
You do, huh? All-righty-then!
I'd be interested in hearing your mom's responses.
And your remark abt what Peter said - I agree - it's "not true for all companies, unfortunately."
This would make an interesting discussion.
Absloutley Bonus Track material. Absolutely.
In case you don't know it Rayanne..... Your Mum (yes that's the Australian spelling, i never got the Mom thing) rocks!

Rayanne said:
hmmm..., perhaps an upcoming Bonus Track... ? methinks...

Here's my mom's latter email:

"For your readers information: Yes, I really do like hard work. It is part of my self worth. I love to see the home canned peaches, or the volumes of strawberries picked from the farm. I love to see my house sparkling and clean, I love to see the wash folded, the ironing done...and the kids faces clean. And Yes, these are women things....but I am a woman and feel fulfilled with the nurturing side of my gender. I have worked hard outside of the home, in my professioin, but no other success can compensete for the self worth and feelings of accommplishment I receive for serving my family. After all the meaning of the word work...is getting things done. I love to get things done and I love to get them done well. Is it a habit or a work of love? Some women have never worked in a home and fulfilled that need...perhaps sometime, somewhere in their life they will realize the opportunity they have missed in working in the best work place in the world..., the Home."

Yep, that's my mom.
I did acknowledge that "most" companies I've worked for do pay attention to equity on most fronts, but did not infer that all of them do. I don't live under a rock, but I also believe that if a woman or a man feels held back in a company or an industry due to sexism (mostly an issue for woman in the past and still relevant today), then they should make the plan to move on to something else. I don't believe the vagrant sexism issues of the past are as relevant today.

We could also open the topic to sexual discrimination of the sexual orientation variety. How many gays and lesbians do you think have been held back, shut out, or pushed down due to their sexual orientation. Or age discrimination. How many people over the age of 50 do you believe are held back, not allowed in, or pushed down because they are deemed no longer relevant in today's work force. I would say a lot. This topic is far beyond just sexism.

But the original topic was "work ethic" and how those that do it with a smile and a great attitude do stand out because on some level their ego's are not in the way and they work for the necessity and the pleasure of being able to physically contribute regardless of the type of work. They get noticed because they have great attitudes.

Rayanne said:
My mom read Maureen's questions about whether or not she really likes hard work and I did receive a rather lengthy response from her. Trust me, Maureen - she really loves hard work.

I agree with most of Peter's points, but I also note that he was careful to delineate "my company" in his statements. This is not true for all companies, unfortunately...

That's all well and good but tell Peter to bring the Big Girl (Hat Tip to Sandra from a recent post) shoes that he's walked in all these many years to the Sand Kicking Contest. He's gonna need 'em. ;)
Do Women Work Harder?
Surveys of British and American Employees Conclude Women Must Work ...
Yes, College Women Work Harder
Our view on pay equity: Why women earn less - Opinion - USATODAY.com
And then, this, from ABC News:
When It Comes to Orgasm, Women Work Harder
There, let that be the last word on the subject.
;)
Yeah, my thots 'zakly.
Dear.......I'm not interested in a sand kicking contest. And reprinted articles aside, the press and media are rarely if ever accurate in their portrayal of reality. Of they are very subjective to the authors or researchers intent and point of view. You can twist anything with "found" facts and research. Just like creative acounting. You can make the numbers say pretty much anything that you want them to say. It doesn't mean they're right now does it. Look at our economy, the banking industry, the financial industry. That is pretty good evidence of my example of creative accounting and reporting. We all thought things were hunky dorie, but they weren't.

For every one article you find to post that is pro your side of the issue, there's another one that I could find that is con to your side of the issue. So that ends in a stale mate and from my point of view, a huge waste of time. We're all entitled to our opinions (we agreed to that a while back), and I'm merely just pointing out another side of the issue that happens to not be in line with yours. But to wage an all out competition as to who is right isn't too productive, now is it!

Cheers!

Maureen Sharib said:

That's all well and good but tell Peter to bring the Big Girl (Hat Tip to Sandra from a recent post) shoes that he's walked in all these many years to the Sand Kicking Contest. He's gonna need 'em. ;)
Do Women Work Harder?
Surveys of British and American Employees Conclude Women Must Work ...
Yes, College Women Work Harder
Our view on pay equity: Why women earn less - Opinion - USATODAY.com
And then, this, from ABC News:
When It Comes to Orgasm, Women Work Harder
There, let that be the last word on the subject.
;)
Wow!

Sandra McCartt said:
As there seems to be an agreement here that discrimination exists in various sectors i'll throw in another little zinger to play with. Why is it that a lot of women when they reach a position of lofty height, manage to make idiots of themselves.

Take Sarah Palin for instance, in my opinion she has managed to set women back about 100 years with her performance on the national stage. How many of us would be tapped to run for vice president and wink our way through a national debate. Lash out at the media when we become a public figure and not be able to answer a question about what we read. Then resign an elected office due to being under attack for ethics violations, frivolous or not. How long does anybody think it will be before Alasaka elects another hockey mom as their governor? Thanks a lot Sarah, you had a lot going for you, sure didn't make us too proud of the second female every selected to run for vice president.

How many women work harder to get to the top then blow it acting like a sterotypical airhead or a brass balled bitch when they get there. I have seen a bunch on all levels of management. Prime example over on Claudia's Wisdom post of the lady who got the promotion then became a micro manager. Do men do the same thing, probably ,but in my experience, not as much as women do. Over and over i hear from women candidates. "I do not want to work for another female boss, i would rather work in an office full of men who smell like goats than an office full of petty, gossipy women".

So rather than "Women dont' get an equal chance" how about, how come it is that women blow it when they get it more often than men? Maybe that is why there are more men in management positions than women. I don't think i have ever heard of a man in the bathroom crying about something at work but i have sure seen and heard a bunch of the fairer sex bawling in the ladies room because somebody was "mean" to them.

I have been accused of being a female, male chauvinist pig, which developed along with my early determination to place female professionals only to have most of them quit after a year or two to stay home with babies or because their husband didn't want them to travel or they didn't like the overtime. Men dont' seem to think they have that option as much as women. Gen X and Y, not so much, couples are sharing the baby bit.and women are not playing the mommy or the my husband says or doesn't want me too, card as much. So maybe we have come a long way baby and a bunch of it could be our own fault that we haven't come more miles.

I would rather work in a bull pen full of men myself. Their gossip is a lot more interesting than a room full of cats hissing at each other. :)

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