I don't know about the unemployed. I do know that, in my experience, there are far too many employed people who are lazy and are skating by on doing the absolute minimum. I know several of them.
A few of them are about to be out of jobs.
Intelligent people know what is going on with the economy and how things are going to get really rough very soon. There are many people who are oblivious to what's going on and think they can keep doing things the way they've been doing them all their lives.
Perhaps they can. Perhaps sitting at an office and doing the minimum required can save their job. I don't think it can.
I think the current malaise in the economy is going to get much worse than it is now and people who think they can, say, work for 40 hours a week (and leave immediately when the clock strikes 6 pm) and keep their job are kidding themselves. Jobs are getting scarce. The Governor of the Bank of England says that we are soon to be into the worst economic crisis in history. That's not all, the BBC says we are two or three weeks away from full blown global financial meltdown...
There are plenty of people who are willing, nay desperate, to do far and above the call of duty, to do more than is required to get quickly disappearing jobs...
This goes for good jobs with good pay and also the so called "slave wages" jobs like flipping hamburgers at Macs. Even at Macs, working the 40 hour shift, who do you think will keep their job? The worker who does the minimum required or the worker who, when business is slow, will mop the floors and clean the windows without first being told to do it?
In the eighties vacations and benefits were perks of jobs. In the year 2012 and beyond, merely having a job will be a perk. I think many people today, who have a poor understanding of the economy, think that the conditions and events of the last twenty years (especially the last 3 years) are normal. What they don't understand is that we have been living on borrowed time created by a government policy of artificially low interest rates and massive money printing.
These government policies have created an artificial economy but these quick fix solutions to our problems can't work forever and they are unraveling quickly in front of our eyes - regardless if people recognize it for what it is or not. Japan will not escape the problems - and, in fact, is a huge part of the problem. And the piper must be paid someday and that day is soon coming upon us.
A few days ago I met a woman whose father was 56 years old and she told me that he hadn't a job for over two years! At 56, it should be his highest earning potential in his entire life, but here he is, out of work.
People under 30 ~ 35 years old today are fooling themselves if they think that they will be able to get along over the next 10 ~ 20 years doing the minimum amount of effort for the minimum amount of working hours a week: 40.
Like I said, there are many people who will gladly take those forty hour a week jobs and invest 72+ hours a week of their time and sweat to make sure they get and keep those jobs. It's not a question of desire or want, it is a question of survival.
Survival of the fittest.
For a short view of just how bad things have gotten in the USA over these last 3 years watch this video. (And don't think I am blaming it all on Obama, the Republicans haven't done any better).
I meet young people today who tell me that they want to work "only" a full 40 hour week - no more than that. I think they are living in a fantasy world. I even had a guy (who works part time) tell me the other day that he "even worked until 1 am the other night."
I am not impressed in the least.
When I was the GM of a broadcasting station in Tokyo, I worked from 5 am until 9:30 pm every night at least 6 days a week.. Often 7. So I am not impressed a bit by someone working until late.
Big surprise for many: People do that all the time. It used to be considered a strong work ethic. It used to be considered normal if someone wanted to "get ahead".
I am not rich but I have always been a person who was hired and then soon became a management staff. Even when I got my first job in 1975. I was only 17 but soon was given the right to clear personal checks and credit transactions. A right many employees did not have and those employees were often in their thirties.
When I graduated from college, my former boss called me out of the blue and tried to hire me back. He said, "We will hire you part-time but pay you more than full time wages." Sounds pretty good, eh?
I refused and said, "No!"
I told him that I didn't go to college to graduate and earn full-time wages. I told him, "I want to work twice full-time and earn five to ten times full-time pay - at least!"
Now, I meet young people who tell me that they want to work "only 40 hours a week" if that much? Dreamers. Good luck with that.
How in the world will you get any jobs when there's a flood of out of work professionals with tons of experience who will work well over and above the call of duty for their wages?
The days of doing the minimum at work are over...
For most people the days of doing the minimum ended when they go out of high school... For too many, they still think that they can continue to do the same.
Well, I've got news for you folks... Life is full of rude awakenings. You can get with the program now, and get off your asses or you can wait until you are forced off your ass.
Like Keith Richards said, "I'm going to walk before they make me run."
Too many people are sitting there waiting... They won't have to wait long.