Sunday, 28 September 2014

More on the work culture of today

I started working full time nearly 17 years ago. Since then, I've moved location, my life has changed beyond recognition .. and even though the jobs I've done during all this time have been fairly similar .. the work environment is now a totally different place. Heck, myself and other colleagues used to moan about how things were at Liverpool Victoria (now LV=) back in the day, but things there were a picnic compared to how most office environments seem to be now.

We all feel this miserable about work sometimes ..
As some of you may know, I get really irritated by the high pressure and multitasking culture in the workplace these days. My friend Nina did an excellent post on the dangers of multitasking a few months back, which you can read here, and needless to say I concur with her views. Multitasking is probably more dangerous and detrimental than most of us realise - our brains were not designed to be concentrating on one thing and then get distracted by someone asking you to do something else, and another person asking you to do another thing five minutes later.

And don't even get me started on this 'thriving under pressure' nonsense. Even if you think you may be able to do your job better when under pressure, the stress of it all will impact on your brain. There' nothing too amiss with the odd bit of pressure and deadlines to meet, but I think the extent of pressure in the workplace these days comfortably crosses unhealthy boundaries.



There must be tons of places where staff morale is low. NHS staff are reported to be taking strike action soon - 'they' say it's over pay - which I sincerely hope isn't the only reason for taking strike action. I won't have people taking strike action solely over pay, but if, as I suspect, it's also down to working conditions, then I would support that. The way NHS staff are being treated nowadays is just wrong.
There probably isn't a simple explanation as to why the state of the work environment has declined over the past few years - one could blame the recession and the unspoken attitude of 'you're lucky to have a job, so we'll treat you however the ***k we like' - and maybe some work environments have been as bad as they are now for a long time - but I do think that the recession must have had something to do with it. There was a massive outbreak of fear at the time the recession started to think, which must have affected some work environments.

If the stress of the work environment could be summed up in simple terms, it would be 'profits put before people'. The money system of today is pretty unnatural. Whilst it's obviously important for a business to make money - as people who have seen their companies fall by the wayside will testify - if a business is so hell bent on making as much money as possible at the expense of its employees' health and well being, it's not likely to be hugely prosperous - because the focus of the well being of staff is paramount.

I just wonder how much more people can take of the daily grind and stress before things really come to a head. There are still some people that love their jobs, but they seem few and far between nowadays. There are probably several people who are more calm and collected than I, who seem to be okay with their jobs, but are actually struggling more than you'd think. There's only so much stress and pressure that people can take. Work isn't meant to be a constant battle. Where we go from here, I don't know. I am still hoping to escape from the 9 to 5 before too long, but will have to be patient :)

Anyway, if you read this on the night I've posted it, enjoy the week ahead ..
Andy

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