Re: Competences LO2927

Rachel Silber (
Sat, 23 Sep 1995 17:01:52 -0400 (EDT)

Replying to LO2906 -- by Ivan Blanco

> > Date: Thu, 14 Sep 1995 09:11:59 -0400 (EDT)
> > From: "Rachel Silber" <>
> <<< some deletions here >>>
> > These are, of course, two sides of the same coin. In the new labor
> > market we are evolving toward, the commitment between the employee and
> > the employer is more transactional (you do this for me and then I do
> > that for you, and if either side gets a better deal elsewhere, we're
> > free to maximize our own self-interest) and less relational ( we both
> > commit, and then there is a pretty wide margin within which we both
> > feel obligated to be forgiving and ignore self-interest in order to
> > maintain the commitment we've made).
> >
> This "transactional" engagement is based more on materialistic
> outcomes, isn't it? << more deletions here >>

I intentionally used the word "self-interest" rather than profit or
money. An example would be an employee who sticks with a company that
pays less money but offers flexible working conditions.

> > I believe that this change is counter to the spirit of a "learning
> > organization". If you "remove fear" as Deming would have it, if you give
> > people a secure ground, they can maximize their contribution to the whole
> > system of which they are a part. If each person is -- must be --
> > primarily concerned with maximizing their potential future earning power,
> > then certain tasks become absurdly self-sacrificing. For example the
> > folks who maintained the old obsolete computer system for the many months
> > it took to get their co-workers up and trained on the new system, and who
> > were then the first to be eliminated when another downsizing or
> > reorganization took place. (This example is a particular pattern that
> > I've seen or heard of several times.)
> >
> <<< some more deletions here >>>
> Again, this idea of "maximizing" one's potential is measured in
> monetary terms ...
> "Life is not getting and having, but being and becoming." I see
> that we will be dominated by transactional engagements for as long as we
> put a price tag to everything we do. It is not that I don't appreciate
> money (my creditors worry a lot more than I do), but not all can be
> measured in terms of maximization of earning potential! Or shouldn't be!

I think we agree more than we disagree. My point was that in the
existing labor market, if you don't pay attention to the "price tag"
elements of your employment relationship, someone else will do it
for you, and not with your best interests necessarily in mind. And that
concern with "maximizing potential future earning power" was to
the detriment of the overall system in which we work.

"Rachel Silber" <>