Feb 12, 2022Liked by Loren Feldman

I think it's just a "thing" in a semi-free market economy and at-will employment. William VdB (I'm not even going to try to spell his name correctly) stated that he expected to see the dam burst when the pandemic started to abate and he was correct. There are a lot of factors at play: Normal migration/movement that was stifled due to pandemic, workers (and companies) discovering that productivity can occur in a remote work force, people (in general) discovering that life is not work etc. I'm on a bit of a trip this morning so I can check out what Shawn, Karen and Jay has to say about it.

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Feb 12, 2022Liked by Loren Feldman

For years we keep hearing that if we raise wages, low wage workers will suffer. I’ve always thought that was a false flag conversation. It appears low wage workers are getting wage increases and price increases are the result, not lost jobs.

Yes, we will see more automation and that is nothing new. We’ve been seeing automation take jobs for my entire working career which is over forty years.

I often tell the story about my days in the vending business. In 1976 when I first went into the vending business, one of our large accounts had 1,200 people working in a paper mill we serviced. Fast forward to 1997 when I went back to visit the plant, there were 200 factory employees making twice the amount of paper they did in 1976.

That’s when it hit me the automation is here to stay. These were not low wage jobs that were automated away, they were high paying jobs where there was an economic benefit to replacing people with machines.

It hasn’t stopped and we also are seeing that raising low wage jobs hasn’t resulted in the huge reduction in jobs. In fact, we have a huge labor shortage, especially at the lower end of the job rung.

For me, this is an immigration problem. For years we’ve been trying to tamp down immigrants coming into the country. The result is shortages in labor for low wage jobs. It’s not a surprise to me and I hope it’s not to your readers.

On to the point of your question. At the higher end of the spectrum, employees are now wanting and voting with their feet to be treated as human beings and not part of a cog in a machine. Companies who treat their people well, keep their employees. Those that don’t are losing those people to their competitors that do.

Employers would do well to start thinking about what their people want and stop treating their team members like cogs in a wheel. Those days are long gone.

Just my opinion.

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