People work for money

Seen on Twitter: "The greatest reward for a person's labor is not what they obtain from it but rather what they become by it."

95% of people work to make money. 99% of IT people. To suggest otherwise is platitudinous claptrap. Dilbert agrees

The remainder I'm not sure if I envy or pity: they are passionate enough about what they do that they do it for satisfaction, and they accept the money as a secondary driver because they need to live to work. Some (and only some) of those who work in the following professions do it because of a deeper need than money: doctors, social workers, peacekeepers, emergency services, military, eco-warriors etc But in IT? Those of us in IT who quite enjoy what we do for a living are a lucky minority. But that's not the primary reason why we work. If you work in IT and you live to work, I suggest you need to get a life.

© Copyright Canstock Photo IncThere's this weird Puritan ethos that wafts through the USA and some other countries, that we work to improve ourselves, that we do it for the nobility of labour. That sort of religious indoctrination of the masses may have worked once but I'd like to think we don't fall for it any more. Whenever I hear it all I can think of is "Arbeit Macht Frei".

There's also this nonsense idea going about that you can motivate people using something other than money. This only works for those so highly paid that they already earn ENOUGH. I don't think there are many of those left in the middle classes and there never wore any in the working classes. It is only the professional elites - the kind of people who spout this crap in the first place - where people are so well paid that they'd leave or take a job for some reason other than money. Spoilt brats. [Update: agrees Do What You Love is the secret handshake of the privileged]

HR has always been rife with idiots but it seems they aren't being driven out by the needs of the harder-edged economy. Most of them still spout this bilge, as it makes their role more complicated. Retaining staff has always been simple (not easy, just simple, like hiring people):

  • Pay them the best you can given your business model.
  • Respect them as people not "resources" (including listening to them).
  • That's it.
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