The other day I wrote about my admiration of artisans and those workers who take pride in their work. Unfortunately, I think they may be in the minority. Lately, I see, read, and hear about people who hate their jobs, and they take out their dissatisfaction on those around them.
When we added onto our house, the general contractor was a man who loved his work, but he hired many subcontractors who did not. The boss came to the site every day and checked in with me and his workers. At times, I’d hear him reprimanding one or two. That made me feel better that he wanted the workers to shine. One unhappy man stands out in my mind.
I always made a big pot of coffee for the workers, and I’d leave some baked items for them. As the bathrooms were being finished, the man who handled the tiling came for a cup of coffee and said to me, “I hate this job.” I was taken aback by his blunt statement, but I just mumbled, “Oh, I’m sorry to hear that.” He didn’t stop there, though. He began a long harangue about how he had wanted to go to college, but didn’t. Then he got ‘tied down’ with a wife and kids. “Look what you have here, and you’re younger than I am. I’d love to build something like this, but I can’t afford it. I just hate it.” He threw away his cup and went back to work.
It wasn’t until after the whole job was finished that I noticed how slipshod that tiler’s works was. In the master bath, the floor had some uneven areas. You didn’t really notice it at first because the room was big, and the floor tiles were small. However, on closer inspection you could see where he just threw tiles down and grouted, whether they were even or not. He even grouted a screw into the floor! Every time I see that floor, I’m reminded of how unhappy that man was, and it showed in his work.
My daughter and SIL have had tons of workers in their home, and most are very proficient. Yet, you still see some who just do a lousy job in their work. They don’t like their work, so they take no pride in it. Fortunately, only on occasions does that lack of self-worth become evident. It’s sad when you think about it.
How many times do you go out to eat and get a rude server? I’ll admit, I’ve only seen it on rare occasions – they rely on tips. But I have heard some stories! Then, have you ever had a sales clerk in a store who just can’t be bothered with a smile or small talk? I know – walk a mile in their shoes before you judge. I just think it comes down to this: when people feel forced into a job, or they’re unhappy and feel trapped, their product or service suffers. And in the end, so do we, the customer!