Are You Being Pummeled By The Great Corporate Squeeze?

by Alonzo on August 9, 2011

Does your boss own you?

Is work sending your stress levels through the roof?

Have your kids seen you so rarely that they’ve forgotten your name?

Don’t worry, you’re not alone.

We’re all being asked to do more, suffering under the weight of ever expanding job responsibilities. According to Mother Jones magazine, Americans have become victims of the “Great Speed Up:”

“We’d hear from creative professionals in what seemed to be dream jobs who were crumbling under ever-expanding to-do lists; from bus drivers, hospital technicians, construction workers, doctors, and lawyers who shame-facedly whispered that no matter how hard they tried to keep up with the extra hours and extra tasks, they just couldn’t hold it together. (And don’t even ask about family time.)”

We work more hours, take less vacations, and sacrifice more family time than the rest of the industrial world. Our American work ethic has created the hardest working people on the planet.

But we’re not getting rewarded for it.

According to Robert Reich, former Clinton labor secretary, over the last three decades the average worker’s wage (adjusted for inflation) has barely budged.

Despite record profits, American corporations refuse to higher more workers, instead forcing current employees to take on even more responsibilities. Who needs more employees when you can work your current ones to the bone?

As Mother Jones so accurately describes the situation:

“… what’s good for American business isn’t necessarily good for Americans. We’re not just working smarter, but harder. And harder. And harder, to the point where the driver is no longer American industriousness, but something much more predatory.”

Working employees to the edges of human endurance is not just abusive, it can become downright dangerous. When physicians, air traffic controllers, and firefighters are pushed to the limit, we’re all placed in harm’s way.

Sound off. Are you feeling the strain and stress of workplace pressures? Are you being asked to do more and more at work?

To read more about the Great American Speed-Up read the article in this month’s issue of Mother Jones magazine.

Image Credit: Sean MacEntee (Flickr)



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