Tools of trade Essay
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In the beginning, God created man and woman and they were bequeathed the whole earth’s resources as their work field. It was simpler then; no industry competition, no unemployment, no discrimination, simpler KRAs and no KPIs. Man and woman had the vast rich fields of nature which brought forth the bests of the land during harvest. As the population grew, demands became more complex and systems changed. The shift was from the simple farming methods and family-style of managing fieldwork to an industrial mechanization of doing things and employer-employee relations.
Technical innovation brought about mechanization. Man’s creativity allowed him to think of ways to make work more efficient and more productive. On the part of managing relations, it was borne out of man’s intuitive competency and moral values. The handshake was as good as integrity and honor. Science and technology brought work efficiencies to higher levels of mass production. Man, on the other hand, was not fully prepared for this change wherein an inanimate object such as a computer could be priced more than man’s efficiencies.
The age of technology placed man in a quandary. Those who were not fully equipped and those who were not prepared for this leap of change remained in the background. This confused man who was used to be the source of ideas and productivity at work. Later, however, man realized that these machines and products of advanced technology could not do anything on its own. The driver is still man himself. Thus, attention is again diverted to man and the development of his potentials.
Once again, man was prized higher than the tools of trade and manufacturing equipment in the organizational set-up in the workplace. Man has reclaimed his position in industry as the most important resource of any organization. Thus, human resource development looks at man as the new human capital. As such, organizations are willing to invest some of its resources in the development of man. However, several factors have now set in. Man cannot only think of himself and his self interests.
Work requires the presence of significant others who also enjoy the same rights and privileges as man. Once again, man is placed in a state of confusion; thus, workplace conflict is a common fare. The vast resource of human capital has created stiff competition in terms of employment opportunities. Specific qualifications and competencies of people are readily available in the world outside an organization. This attraction poses as a threat to the incumbent employees whose security of tenure is endangered.
Employers, on the other hand, see the resources outside its organization as an opportunity to grow the business and bring the entire organization to greater heights. Thus, concepts like workplace diversity, equal opportunity for work, ageism, retirement age, mandatory retirement, retrenchment, and redundancy came about. Employees perceived as less efficient and less competent to handle the demands of the organization are separated from employment. Thus, another conflict arises.