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Work Ethic

 
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Old 06-01-2015, 07:46 PM   #1
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Work Ethic


I know this topic has been beat down and covered a million times, but I need to get this off my chest.

What is with the younger generation and their complete non-existent level of work ethic?? Started a new guy today. He's 22 years old (a year younger than me). By all means, he's a nice guy. No bad attitude, very respectful, does what he's told. As a person, I have no problem with him whatsoever. Multiple people I'm close with know him personally, and have nothing but good things to say about him.

But at work, he's next to useless. You can almost visually see what's happening in his head. He sees a task, knows it will require effort, and literally has to work up the courage to perform said task. Today I had him moving soil around into a series of raised garden beds we built.

Watching him move dirt was the most painful thing I've ever witnessed. He maybe made one shovel every 20 seconds. After each rep, he'd look at the shovel, look at the pile, and stop in horrified awe at how much work he had left to do and how hard his task was. Come time to push the wheelbarrow, even worse. The idea of moving this heavy object seemed a fate only slightly better than death. Then after dumping the dirt, he'd take a breather to recover seemingly in agony at the "hard work" he was doing.

Yet the reasons for his horrifically slow pace were 0% physical and 100% mental. My sister has the physical strength to do was doing. The problem was the idea of doing hard work is actually frightening to him. Almost to the extent of a phobia. It paralyzed him to the point where he could barely function, and he had no mental ability to push through it to get the job done. The same can be said for a very large chunk of my generation.

I know most of us were brought up knowing that just because it feels uncomfortable or requires effort doesn't mean its ok to stop, or even slow down. But what happened?? All of a sudden the idea of doing something too difficult is so overwhelming that just seeing hard work is enough to throw someone into a near anxiety attack?

At 22 years old, he is by every indication of age, a grown man. Yet you can't call someone a man when they can't push themselves to get a job done just because it requires a little effort. It's a discouraging reality we have to live with in this current generation.
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Old 06-01-2015, 07:50 PM   #2
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Re: Work Ethic


Ok, so?

I try to stay away from shovels.

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Old 06-01-2015, 07:53 PM   #3
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Re: Work Ethic


I saw the same thing when I was your age and I'd bet every other generation has seen the same. Go hire a 22 year old with a nagging wife, a baby and rent due and you'll see some fire in that belly. That guy's going to dig to China if he has to.

Nothing wrong with this generation, that kid just needs to go hungry for a bit.
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Old 06-01-2015, 07:56 PM   #4
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Re: Work Ethic


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Ok, so?

I try to stay away from shovels.
You can say that. You've developed skills to apply yourself in roles that don't involve shovels. So have I. But I bet you've also put in a hard day's work to get where you are today.

Now let's say your a 22 year old kid. You have no skills, no real experience, and no other opportunities currently available to you. You can put in some work, make some money, and learn a trade that is going to let you have a rewarding career. The only catch is you have to break a sweat to do it.

Are you telling me you would throw away the one opportunity you have just because you have to push yourself a little bit? If it was me, I'd be busting my ass behind that shovel and proving that I'm willing to work hard and produce work involving more engaging tools than a shovel.
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Old 06-01-2015, 07:57 PM   #5
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Re: Work Ethic


Give him a reasonable time frame to do his tasks.

Gomer, I need these raised beds filled with dirt from that pile right there.
You have 30 minutes and then we need to move on to another task.

Do you have any questions? Good. Better get started.


If the task isn't completed, it gives you the in to talk with him and try to save (or not) his job.

My next door neighbor's kid is 18 and hasn't done any (nada, zip, zilch, zero) work at all. I doubt he will know the first thing about a shovel either if one comes his way eventually.
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Old 06-01-2015, 07:58 PM   #6
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Re: Work Ethic


Quote:
If it was me
It's not....get used to it.
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Old 06-01-2015, 08:08 PM   #7
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Re: Work Ethic


I've worked with a few ex army young guys who had some really good hustle. They made every task a challenge. This one guy even kept setting his stop watch to track and improve his speeds.

Another young guy, probably about 19, in college. Academic type. Also had great hustle. Didn't like to stand around, so he'd always find something to do even if I was figuring out the next thing.

Another young guy production framing background. Great at that. Give him a challenge though like remodel framing and he ground to a halt. When there were 5 ways to do one thing he couldn't pick one.

You just have to find the right people. They are out there. The hardest thing is figuring out if it's worth giving the slow guy a chance. Confidence comes with experience. For some that takes a day or two, for some a month or two. Some never get it.
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Old 06-01-2015, 08:16 PM   #8
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Re: Work Ethic


You just have to find the right people. They are out there. The hardest thing is figuring out if it's worth giving the slow guy a chance. Confidence comes with experience. For some that takes a day or two, for some a month or two. Some never get it.[/QUOTE]


While I agree, figuring out which one you got can be an expensive transition. You like to at least see some kind of hint that he will eventually succeed. Watching what the OP described is just gonna make me get the paperwork in line to let the guy go. At some point during that day, he better either kick it into gear, or at the very least improve his attitude so that at least mentally he gets himself in a better place. I hate working with quitters.
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Old 06-01-2015, 08:28 PM   #9
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Re: Work Ethic


I live in Silicon Valley, California. Most 20 somethings here are living in Mom's house, playing computer games and waiting for the $100,000 Facebook job to come knocking at the door.

If you've been raised by "new age" parents, and, had them tell you, your whole life, how special, entitled and different you are, plus never having to worry or break a sweat about having mom and dad get you everything you ever wanted.........what would you expect.
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Old 06-01-2015, 08:30 PM   #10
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Re: Work Ethic


You want to drive yourself to drink go talk to the younger generation....

Very few are interested in learning anything that they can make a living at. Manual labor, getting dirty or going home tired are not tasks thet consider doing.

Now play video games or text on the phone, all day long....

They feel they are owed a living and don't want to work for anything...

Student aid, welfare & growing dope pay too well, require virtually no physical effort and leave plenty of time for the cell phone....

and parents ARE WAY TOO PROTECTIVE and willing to underwrite their kids lazy ass lives.....
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Old 06-01-2015, 08:31 PM   #11
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Re: Work Ethic


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I saw the same thing when I was your age and I'd bet every other generation has seen the same. Go hire a 22 year old with a nagging wife, a baby and rent due and you'll see some fire in that belly. That guy's going to dig to China if he has to.

Nothing wrong with this generation, that kid just needs to go hungry for a bit.
Yes sir! A Whif ..Couple of kids ...And a big bank note should set him straight real quick !!! Throw in two car payments .And some doctor bills along with the vet bills. [kids gotta have pets!] It won't take long before before he turns into a Hustler !!
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Old 06-01-2015, 08:47 PM   #12
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Re: Work Ethic


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I live in Silicon Valley, California. Most 20 somethings here are living in Mom's house, playing computer games and waiting for the $100,000 Facebook job to come knocking at the door.

If you've been raised by "new age" parents, and, had them tell you, your whole life, how special, entitled and different you are, plus never having to worry or break a sweat about having mom and dad get you everything you ever wanted.........what would you expect.
I see the same chit over here . Don't even get me started !

My BIL thinks he's the most intelligent human that ever lived ! But hasn't left home since birth ! And never will ! He's 40! How sad is that?

Every time I see the boy I want to punch him In the face .. But!!! I love his Sister!
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Old 06-01-2015, 09:17 PM   #13
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Re: Work Ethic


Some people are not cut out for manual labor, big deal.
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Old 06-01-2015, 09:26 PM   #14
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Re: Work Ethic


Should have gotten him to dig a few holes for deck posts. the whole shoveling loose dirt into a wheelbarrow would look allot more appealing.
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Old 06-01-2015, 09:31 PM   #15
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Re: Work Ethic


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Some people are not cut out for manual labor, big deal.
True that! But When I have to clean out my Father In Laws gutters While his own able bodied son has been a bum for 40 years seems to piss me off a bit!...A bunch!!!
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Old 06-01-2015, 09:53 PM   #16
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Re: Work Ethic


I'm gonna agree with Ethan on this. All eras are the same. Often people will do only what is required of them.

Hockey, you're the same age as the kid with no hustle. Clearly the younger generation is fine if you catch the right ones.

My grandfather told me a great story from his father's(my GGF) farm. Back some time in the late 30's they had a young hand that was routinely found passed out from drinking the fermentation from the bottom of the grain silo with a length of rubber hose. He was the greatest generation.
Go ahead, tell me again about the kids today.
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Old 06-02-2015, 12:37 AM   #17
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Re: Work Ethic


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Some people are not cut out for manual labor, big deal.
You're missing the point.

It has nothing to do with manual labour. It's about not being mentally strong enough to push through something that's hard.

This guy couldn't move lose dirt from point A to point B. Let's say down the road he takes a job in sales (clearly the construction biz isn't going to work out for him). Now what if his future wife gets sick, has to stop working, and now it's on him to support his family. Are you going to tell me that buddy who got overwhelmed at the task of shovelling dirt is going to be able to man up, grind it out, and get his numbers up so his family can eat? That requires a lot more mental strength than shovelling dirt.

Call me crazy, but the ability of my grandfather's, and even parents' generation to "suck it up and do it" seems to be fading fast. Everyone runs into adversity in some form or another weather it be something as complex as losing a loved one or as simple as a large pile of dirt that needs to be moved. Being able to push through adversity is 100% a mandatory trait to live a successful life.

It's my opinion that people from my generation, moreso than the ones preceding me, are weak, easily broken, and crumble upon the first sign of adversity.
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Old 06-02-2015, 12:50 AM   #18
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Re: Work Ethic


Age doesn't make a man.
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Old 06-02-2015, 03:30 AM   #19
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Re: Work Ethic


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You're missing the point.

It has nothing to do with manual labour. It's about not being mentally strong enough to push through something that's hard.

This guy couldn't move lose dirt from point A to point B. Let's say down the road he takes a job in sales (clearly the construction biz isn't going to work out for him). Now what if his future wife gets sick, has to stop working, and now it's on him to support his family. Are you going to tell me that buddy who got overwhelmed at the task of shovelling dirt is going to be able to man up, grind it out, and get his numbers up so his family can eat? That requires a lot more mental strength than shovelling dirt.

Call me crazy, but the ability of my grandfather's, and even parents' generation to "suck it up and do it" seems to be fading fast. Everyone runs into adversity in some form or another weather it be something as complex as losing a loved one or as simple as a large pile of dirt that needs to be moved. Being able to push through adversity is 100% a mandatory trait to live a successful life.

It's my opinion that people from my generation, moreso than the ones preceding me, are weak, easily broken, and crumble upon the first sign of adversity.

What you are speaking about is gumption with a heavy dose of constitution.

(trying to type this on a tablet with SwiftKey is like trying to drive a spike with the end of a 2x4)

Sorry for teditorial, but it seemed fit.
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Old 06-02-2015, 04:53 AM   #20
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Re: Work Ethic


I hired a 19 year old 3 years ago. He didn't last a month, no motivation, moved slow, and didn't catch on to repeated tasks.

Hired him again about 3 months ago. Totally different guy. A few years at dead end jobs made learning a trade a lot more appealing. He is at the shop at least 10 minutes early every day, understands attic work and ditches are in his job description, and has pretty heavily invested in tools.

I've hired and fired some 40 year olds that wouldn't get the second chance.

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