Archive for February 9, 2011

When hard work doesn’t pay

February 9, 2011

Is this Eric's dream?

At We Love Local Government, we like staff who work hard.  Whether it’s at the top of the ladder or down the bottom doesn’t matter; it’s about taking pride in your job and doing a job you would be proud to put your name to.  Schemes like the Guardian’s ‘Local Government Heroes‘ is right up our street.  We also aren’t totally against these people being rewarded for their efforts.  More creative ways of this recently highlighted include getting celebrities along to award events, but a simpler marker for rewarding hard workers is to pay them a bit more money.

We’re not talking millions here, and occasionally thanks to the Dilbert Principle occasionally someone gets paid more than they’re worth, but generally if someone works hard and takes on a job with a lot of responsibility they get a few more pennies in their bank account at the end of the month.

Not for the first time, nor for the last, this is where we appear to disagree with the great Eric Pickles.

You see, Eric doesn’t seem to like the fact that hard working managers (and yes, there are such things) get paid well for their work; no, Eric doesn’t like this at all. In fact, Eric likes this so little that he seems to want to do all he can to vilify these people.  Whether it’s calling for them all to be named-and-shamed, constantly berating them for doing non-jobs, simply calling for them to be cut altogether or hiring hitmen to pick them off one at a time*, Eric wants to rid the world of the curse that is above averagely paid workers.

It’s strange for a number of reasons, not least being the fact that he is above averagely paid himself.  What is it that makes you prey to attack when you reach a certain level?  What changes about you as a person when you reach the magical figure of £58k?

As an experiment, think about a primary school teacher you know (odds are you do, otherwise think Joanna Lumley in a younger body); they are great, caring, hard working and well respected by all around them for the impact they have on lives. (more…)