Friday, November 3, 2006

He is well paid who is well satisfied

On a personal note, I want to express my gratitude to my employer who has recognized the work we do at the call centre here in Hamilton as well as those in Toronto and Ottawa and the fact that there has been a huge turnover in workers. Not because we in particular are seen as a "job between jobs," but because some other call centres have paid their employees more -- significantly more -- just to start, more even than those who work in middle to upper management It was certainly a huge surprise to find out what my hourly wage will be as of the week after next. Part of it is an across the board increase while the rest is based on merit; so for obvious reasons, I won't say exactly how much of an increase I have received myself -- but it's large enough to convince me to stay for a little while longer.

Manufacturing and primary industries like agriculture and mining are the hearts of this country, what we're built on. But 80 percent of Canadians work in the service sector, and they deserve respect too and to be compensated with a decent wage or salary. This particular increment is a sign that least my employer respects my co-workers and me and the sometimes mentally enduring work we have to put up with on a daily basis. Mind you, I can't help but wonder whether this was inevitable or if there was a direct link to the income trust decision the other day -- in an FTE setup like the company I work for, unitholders demand a lot of the cashflow go to them and not to the employees that make the distributions possible.

It's probably just a coincidence, but I'm grateful. In the real world, if we're well satisfied then we're well paid. But as Shakespeare wrote, it's supposed to be the other way around. At least I know there are some who think it's both. If it helps stem some of the turnover, so much the better -- it's kind of hard fostering friendships at work if you don't know if they'll be there the next time you report for work.

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