Monday, December 16, 2013

You get what you're worth

You get out of life what you put into it and it is as simple as that. If your career consists of dead end jobs that pay squat then maybe it's time you just got off of your dead ass and onto your dying feet and find a way to make you more valuable to an employer.

I listen to people gripe about making minimin wage for working 40 hours and the truth of the matter is that they have nobody to blame but themselves.

A basic education in this country is free and if someone is either too lazy or too stupid to take advantage of it then it's not someone else's fault. 

Employees pay for skills. If you are capable of running a multi-billion dollar corporation well you will likely make a damned big pile of money because you are worth it. Few people can do this.

If you are capable of running a piece of heavy equipment on a construction site you will make a pretty good wage for your skills. Good heavy equipment operators are not easy to find.

On the other hand if you have no skills you really are not worth a whole lot. It's simply the way it is. It is simply supply and demand. If the supply of a certain skill is short, then wages are higher than those that have skills that are more common.

Some people call food stamps and the like as corporate subsidies. They are not. The companies are simply paying people what they are worth. If the people were worth more they would be paid more.

Sometimes education factors in, sometimes not. My favorite complainer is the guy that got a master's degree planning on starting his career in six figures only to find out that nobody wants to hire someone with a master's degree in puppetry.

On the other hand, yesterday I watched some guy that very well might never have finished high school dock about two or three football fields worth of floating steel alonside a dock with a fair tide and a foul wind. He did it so smoothly he wouldn't have cracked an egg between the boat and the dock. I was impressed.

Betcha he makes a pretty hefty wage. He's worth every penny of it.

Then the game works its way on down to those that bag groceries or work in fast food. The fast food place pays them poorly because they have no real skills and can easily be replaced.

It really is as simple as that.

There are people there that simply do not have the value that other people with skills that are in demand have. There are other ways a person can increase their value without too many skills. They can simply go into a field that nobody else wants and be paid fairly well for it. The guys that picked up my trash every Thursday told me they were doing OK and I'll take them at their word.

At least they were doing well until they were replaced by automation. Now instead of one guy driving and two guys dumping cans into the truck, there is one guy that drives and operates a machine that empties the trash into the truck.

Because he can run the machinery as well as has a CDL and knows how to drive the truck he's doing better than he was when he simply drove the old trash truck and the other two guys are now doing something else.

There are times when markets for skills get flooded and the value of the respective tradesmen drops. I recently had a furnace installed and what was interesting is that the guy that installed was in his mid 40s and had only recently entered the heating trade.

The market for his previous trade dropped off and instead if crying about it, he simply went back to school and learned the HVAC trade which took him less time than most of his fellow students because he had skills from his previous trade that were helpful in his new trade. I respect the guy for that.

Of course there are still a lot of people out there that have not learned trades or picked up marketable skills that think that it is unfair that they are in poverty.

In this country there are apprenticeships in most of the trade unions that would lead to pretty good careers and when you learn the trade. After you become proficient there's also often the opportunity to go into business for one's self.

Take the electrician I hired a while back to move the main power cables for me while I re-sided my house a few years back. He was a master electrician that was a one man outfit that did smaller jobs around town. He was constantly busy and because the work I needed done was a very small job he squeezed me in while he was making a parts run on another job. He was doing well.

I know a plumber that recently opened his own little business and since he did he seldom has time to drop by because he's constantly busy. He does well. 

I get a kick out of people that gripe about what plumbers and electricians charge. They're worth it, though, because if they were not worth it nobody would hire them.

Some college degrees are certainly worth more than others. Humanities degrees are not very marketable but engineering degrees are. The little girl up the street just finished an engineering degree a while back and started off at a pretty damned hefty salary.

The fool that got a master's in puppetry is not so fortunate. His master's degree is hardly worth the paper it is printed on and his dreams of starting at six figures were pipe dreams that have changed into an ugly reality. He owes a fortune in student loans.

The truth of the matter is that you get paid what you're worth.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

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