Unemployment is not always about no jobs being available

The United Nations brought out a report on domestic workers at the beginning of 2013. An interesting statistic was that Spain is one of the top employers of domestic workers and most of them are foreigners. Hey what? The country with one of the highest unemployment numbers in Europe imports labour. About 2 million of them. That could make quite a dent in the millions that are currently unemployed.

So why do Spaniards not want to work as domestic workers? Well who does, one might even want to ask. After all there are umpteen jobs out there that nobody wants to do. Like for instance clean the floors in a supermarket, or stack shelves, or serve behind a counter. How mindless is that? How many times a day do you want to grab sausages, weigh them, put them in a packet and slap a price tag on it? And toilet cleaning?

It’s obviously not anything any self respecting person wants to do, surely.

And so it comes as somewhat of a surprise to see that ranked in number 5 place of the all time best companies to work for in the USA in 2012 is in fact a grocery chain. Yip. Their staff turnover is a low 3.6%. People love to work there. Regardless of whatever they have to do, and cleaning of toilets must be one of the tasks surely, nobody leaves their job. Because they love working there.

So it’s not actually about the type of work that one has to do that makes one want to work at something. It is all about a whole bunch of other stuff. In fact some serious research into wages and salaries has brought up that high rewards are really only necessary if the rest of the situation is unbearable.

It is probably safe to say that the counter staff at Wegmans, number 5 in the best companies to work for, are not earning Investment Banker bonuses. And at a loss of 3.6% the excuse these execs sprout of having to keep good staff and hence the high salaries doesn’t actually cut it either.

Of course high skills and knowledge are something one has to pay for. Cheating others out of money obviously requires skills. Oh wait, Investment Bankers don’t steal money, they just shuffle it around. To deserving individuals. My bad. (I’m sure there are a ton of highly skilled ethical bankers out there too. Regrettably their good deeds generally go unnoticed.)