journalman's Diaryland Diary

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Pool of Braniacs, Variance

It's been nice settling back to ground zero (street level) over the past few days. My sheets are long-laundered, my room is clean, and in response to requests from the roommate, I whipped out a can of amazing and made my entire bathroom gleam from top to bottom.

I seriously have a strange and rarely-used talent for cleaning bathrooms. I hardly ever do it, but when I do, people swear it's the cleanest myriad of ceramic, chrome, glass, and grout they have ever had the pleasure of experiencing.

I brought my laptop in there this morning to read entries. It was lovely.


15 BUX AN HOUR - 2 PERSPECTIVES

The expression 'one man's trash is another man's treasure' certainly applies to the job market. People's perceptions of value and money are extraordinarily subjective, and cannot be questioned. They can only be understood, and if lucky, aligned with your own financial objectives.

It’s a well-known principle of compensation that more money does not equate to higher motivation, however a ‘perception of not enough money’, regardless of its causes or validity, will diminish motivation. They key, as an employer, is to maximize employee motivation, paying valuable staff well enough to keep them, and to do so without throwing money out the window.

My comments are more an observation of how the same dollar value is perceived so differently by various people performing non-technical (architecture/engineering) roles at this firm.


1) ArtChick

A friend temp'ed in my office and did minor clerical last week for an afternoon. $ 15/hour. It was a great favor and worth every penny, for the record.

She referred to the rate of pay as "particularly bad". (It makes me appreciate her coming in even more, by the way.) Her situation: she's an ultra-academic (leafy green ivy) with limited experience working in an office environment, though accomplished in a number of other areas. This friend will hold out for, and probably will readily attain, a rate of pay that is fulfilling to her.


2) Green Bob

Green Bob received a full academic scholarship to NYU and just graduated (3.88) with a particular interest in green/renewable communities. He is presently being paid 10/hour by the university, and relished the opportunity to earn $ 12/hour at my company in the afternoons. I'm bringing him in at $12.50 instead for a few months, and then if all goes well, will offer him a full-time position with a full-timer's salary and benefits.

It's not that I particularly grin about saving a few dollars per hour, it's that I'm lucky enough to find such enthusiasm coupled with such a smart brain -- at any price.

People get ready... Bob the assistant's startin’ tomorrow.


THE CHALLENGE

Remember the volvox? We studied those right along amoebas and parameciums in 6th grade biology class. The volvox was the first multicelled organism advanced enough for ‘division of labor’. Some cells did one thing, others did all the pushing.

My challenge is to build a volvox. Do with three people what two people, of any stature, intelligence, or experience level could ever accomplish.

Green sarah in the mornings, MWF
Green bob afternoons M-R
ML on Fridays.
(Setting the VM system to auto-answer for tuesday/thurs mornings)


These kids are brilliant. Sarah even removed the door handle from our entrance door and switched it to the inside while I took a phone call today.

My job is to lay out a plan and to keep them busy working. While a fleet of superminds is a blessing, having their hands be idle and their brains disengaged is a curse far greater than I can exorcise.

Sink or swim, buddy. To hell with it. I think I’m going to swim.

5:38 p.m. - 2006-09-20

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