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What exactly is a “job”?

What exactly is a “job”?

Several precise criteria make it possible to determine whether a job is truly a “job for me…” or not. (Photo: Tom Bloomford for Unsplash)

Damn job! The section where Olivier Schmucker answers your most interesting questions [et les plus pertinentes] About the modern business world… and of course its shortcomings. Appointment to read Tuesday And the Thursday. Would you like to participate? Send us your question to [email protected]

Q: “I am the cashier. My salary is minimum. My work hours change from week to week. Customers yell at me without me being able to respond. And my boss Checks Constantly using the surveillance camera. Is it just me or do I already have a “job like this?” -Zach

A: Dear Zach, The question you are asking, in fact, is to know what exactly a “job of…” is. Is it a low-paying job as some people think? Whose job conditions are as miserable as others say? Is it a job where the pressure to perform is so anxiety-inducing that it drives workers to burnout, as others believe? What else do I know?

In order to see all this more clearly, let me tell you about a recent study that provides, as it seems to me, an answer as original as it is relevant to this serious question. This study was signed by Francis Green, professor of labor and education economics at University College London, and Sanju Lee, a researcher in the economics of education at the University of Warwick.

The researchers had a great hunch, saying that the classic criteria for judging job quality—the amount of pay, working conditions, and so on—are key. – It was not sufficient to reflect the full reality of the worker’s daily life. That is why they chose seven qualitative criteria that seemed essential to them:

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– Enter;

– Career development prospects.

– The quality of time in which the work was completed;

– An opportunity to practice basic skills and feel safe;

– Physical environment;

– Social environment.

-Intensity of work.

They then looked at whether each of these criteria had any impact on workers' well-being, by analyzing them using two databases, the Single Job Quality Index and the WHO Well-being Index 5. This, taking into account the jobs being carried out today in Europe.

This monk's work allowed them to make a great discovery: “The data indicate a threshold for 'men's jobs…' at the 10th percentile,” they noted. Because it is enough, they explain, for one to move, for one of the seven chosen criteria, from the 10th percentile to the 20th percentile to see one's level of well-being at work suddenly jump, to the point where it is no longer real that one feels “completely in m…”

All of this actually means something very simple. We can be considered to have a “job…” from the moment we are among the 10% of workers who are worst off in relation to many of the seven criteria used by the two researchers. For example, a worker is among the 10% of the lowest paid workers in his sector of activity (let's say the restaurant sector), if he is among the 10% who cannot use his basic skills in their daily life at work (he is only asked to do the laundry) and if he is forced If you work in a room whose condition is particularly deplorable (bad lighting, incorrect setting of water temperature, etc.), then, yes, this person can consider that he has a “job m…”.

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And you, are you now working in “a job like…”? To get an idea, I invite you to look at the seven criteria in a simplified way. Review each one, and ask yourself: “In my line of work, am I facing the worst possible conditions, or at least nearly the worst?” If you get that many “yes” votes, you can legitimately consider that you have a “job…”, and tell yourself that it's definitely time to see if the grass is greener somewhere else…

For your information, you should also know that Francis Green and Sangwoo Lee had the intelligence to dig into their data, and this allowed them to discover several very interesting points:

“Jobs” are most common in the construction, hotel and restaurant sectors as well as home-based activities. They are common in the fishing, hunting, forestry and agricultural industries.

– In general, “jobs” are associated with low educational level as well as immigrant status.

– The probability of getting a “job…” is lower in rich countries and in countries where labor regulations are strict.

-And finally, three final points: The probability of getting a “job…” is a little higher when you work for a large company; Working in the private sector increases the risk of getting a “job”; The gender of the worker has no effect on the probability of obtaining a “job…”.

There you are, Zach. From what you've told me, it seems clear to me that you already have a “job…”. This is due to the fact that many of the criteria used by the researchers are clearly red in your case: income (minimum), feeling of insecurity (highly variable working hours), physical environment (abusive clients), and social conditions. Environment (boss control). My suggestion? Change jobs quickly, if possible. Because there is definitely a way to find better elsewhere.

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By the way, the French writer Françoise Giraud said in “What I Believe”: “Happiness: doing what you want and wanting what you do.”