I read an article in the Wall Street Journal entitled Slacker Nation. It discussed the new trend found in younger workers in Japan. They did not want promotions. Therefore they were skipping career advancement exams which were required to move ahead. This is an unusual development. Previously the Japanese were known as workaholics and wanted to get ahead.
The stereotype of a promotion in Japan was a higher salary and better title. However this often came with a requirement to work late daily. These days the promotions may not mean that much more in salary. Regardless of pay, many young workers do not want to get the promotion. As such they are not putting in a full effort at work.
Companies are trying to figure out this newer generation. They are calling this new breed of worker the “so-so folks”. These individuals want to forget about goals. They value staying true to yourself. They think that not everybody needs to be a leader.
I find this thinking quite entertaining. It seems nice that somebody has figured out that killing yourself at work is just not worth it. When I first got out of school I worked hard. Then I started burning out and got laid off. At that point, I felt just like these Japanese workers. I played a lot of video games. And I did not feel the need to jump back into the work force.
Hey. I know some people want extra responsibilities and more money. That’s fine for them. But can’t a less ambitious individual do his time at work and then go home? There is more to life than working. Perhaps the sooner we figure this out, the better off we will be in the long run.
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