I led an activity in the office earlier and one part was to have everyone agree about what adjective best describes the company.
The game didn't end. We were left with two adjectives: 'productive' and 'good training ground'. These were very exact descriptions but must be taken cautiously because they are only true to a certain extent.
First, the office should be productive. Any business should be productive. In an environment so full of change and so full of competition, if a company does not act quickly and effectively, it will be left behind.
The reason why we work is ideally to be productive. Man was created by man to work among other things, of course, don't you agree? Adam and Eve were supposed to be stewards of the Garden of Eden. However, practically, in these times almost everyone just wants to earn good money. That is not bad per se, especially when you are earning money and having self fulfillment at the same time.
Now, the company also has a reason to hire us. That is also to earn good money and the company earns good money if it is productive. This is the very reason why it exists and why we exist in it.
To say that a company that wants to earn money is a good training ground is also true. Education does not end with a college diploma. Education happens everyday as we work - as we learn new programs and as we work with people.
However, we should be cautious enough to draw the line between a school and a business. We learn while working in order to be better at what we do. It should be the case that we learn in order to work and not the other way around if you get what i mean.
There must also be a term or a set period for each learning. We must draw up semesters or quarters and after we finish each level, we can ask if we got a high or a low grade. Getting a high grade means we are better at something thus we can take control of our work better. Furthermore, we are better in a way that we can already share and make use of what we do. A low grade means you might just stay and not advance yet to the next level.
In the same way, there are also limits to achieving productivity. It must not be done at the expense of the welfare or peace of mind of another person. This goes both ways to the company and to the employee. In the same way that the company must not take advantage, the person must also not take advantage of the company.
I hate to say this but the usual thing i see especially when it comes to government agencies is that employees think it is okay to get office supplies or spend resources for their personal use. I have some friends who just answer friendster surveys at work. Well, the graveyard shift is no excuse at all.
It just so happens sometimes that our purposes are confused. I saw one entry in joyce' journal about how students find it uncool to say they studied. Yes, i seldom find someone who is proud to say he or she studied for an exam. It is so because it is better to come out with high grades without 'studying' than to come out with low grades after saying you studied. To think that they are called students because they study.
Oh well, an employee is also an employee.