Opinion

Getting all shook up about young workers’ sense of entitlement

As an advanced society, we have developed excellent methods of deferring any negativity away from ourselves and effectively attaching the blame to someone, or something, else.

Accountability is a thing of the past. The blame game is so much easier and everyone can play.

For example, it’s no secret that the quality of the modern day workforce in North America is declining rapidly. People seem to lack the pride and work ethic that flowed through the blood of generations before us. We can blame technology for distracting us with Facebook on computers, or texting on the cellphone. We can blame it on family commitments. Maybe the government and our politicians.

Many people point the finger at our own employers. When it comes down to it, we can blame anything if we try hard enough.

I blame peanut butter and pickle sandwiches. Here’s why.

“Hard work pays off in the future, but laziness pays off right now” seems to be the theme of the newest generation of workers. Everyone wants a paycheque, but the majority of them don’t want to work hard for it.

Is it their fault? Could be, but let’s blame the schools instead. Teachers and the school boards.

Students nowadays rarely face any consequences from their teachers for late assignments, incomplete homework, or complete lack of effort. At the end of the school year, these students are rewarded with a promotion to the next grade despite their lack of effort. The school board will go to great lengths to avoid emotionally scarring the children by using the “f” word — fail. Besides, the child’s parents may sue!

The parents! Aha, the perfect scapegoat for the school board. Given the fact that there are so many single parents holding down two or three jobs just to make ends meet, they had no time to instil and reinforce values, ethics, and pride into their children. Disciplinary action is non-existent because they would rather be best friends with their kids than parents. That is where the blame belongs.

But parents need to pawn off these charges somewhere else. What about drugs. Yes, that’s it! Back in the 1960s and ’70s the drug movement around the world reached its peak and all of the kids were doing it. “Peace and love and freedom.” Hippie and stoned was the only way to be. If it weren’t for the drug movement, accidental pregnancies wouldn’t have been so high (no pun intended) and festivals like Woodstock never would have spawned so many single-parent households. Hmmm. Woodstock?

It wasn’t drugs that created our lazy workforce. It was rock ’n’ roll. Without bands like Pink Floyd and The Jimi Hendrix Experience, there would have been no music festivals featuring drug-induced musicians promoting the use of psychedelic narcotics and carefree attitudes. It all makes sense now.

Although, rock ’n’ roll never would have been without Elvis Presley. If you think about it, it was inevitable that his swanky clothes, reckless sideburns, and cool rebellious demeanour would one day result in this modern day disarray.

In reality, the newest generation of the workforce can’t blame Elvis. They need to be held accountable for their own actions and stop assuming that everything should come to those who are only willing to do the bare minimum. There is a disturbing lack of pride in the workforce and an overwhelmingly false sense of entitlement. It’s not everyone, but there are far too many of them, and there’s no one to blame except themselves.

Yet, if Elvis was alive today, and believe me folks he’s not, maybe he would hold himself accountable. After all, there really isn’t anything else he could blame.

Except maybe peanut butter and pickle sandwiches.

 

Published in the Guelph Mercury on April 26, 2012

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