What is the value of the work

What determines the value of work

"We need work for a very simple reason, namely to belong in society," says motivational researcher Helene Karmasin. In order to be part of society, you need financial, cultural and social capital, continues the motivational researcher. People get the former mainly through work. "What society defines as paid work and how high the wages are, is closely related to the structure of values ​​within society." The future of work and the work of the future were discussed at the symposium of the same name on the occasion of the ten-year existence of the Job-Transfair association on Tuesday in the Novomatic Forum in Vienna.

Many professions with future potential do not find the recognition they deserve in the social structure of values, adds Regina Prehofer, Vice Rector at the Vienna University of Economics and Business. In addition to education and care, this also includes craftsmanship for them. "In order for these professional groups to be upgraded, they would have to be paid better, but we should also be more aware of the benefits to society," explains Prehofer.

Devaluation of the nursing professions

In this context, Job-Transfair managing director Thomas Rihl criticizes the devaluation of the care professions through proposals from politics, for example by the long-term unemployed should simply switch to care. The pressure on people has increased immensely in the last ten years, he explains. "In our information society, people who have information sovereignty have a head start." Rihl therefore demanded not to hand everything over to the market, that would not work for the labor market.

Nikolaus Dimmel, social scientist and lawyer at the University of Salzburg, spoke in his keynote speech in the morning of the "suspended", meaning the increasing number of those who can no longer keep up with the increased performance and mobility requirements on the job market. The modern world of work is characterized by far-reaching, opposing and multifaceted upheavals. Growing wage inequality goes hand in hand with dramatic relative educational losses, noted Dimmel. Regardless of the catchphrase "making work pay", wage labor no longer protects a noticeably growing proportion of the employed from poverty, is no longer worthwhile, he added.

The salary spread is mainly due to the fact that the upper ranks compete with each other and not with the ordinary workers, explained Karmasin. "In the past, the battle for validity was fought over honor, today it is money."

That work generates enough money is just one requirement, the motives for when work makes you happy are diverse. Self-realization has gained in importance, adds the motivational researcher. "But our society not only needs self-actualizers." Above all, it sees three groups in which the framework conditions and demands must be improved or taken into account. "These are women, the elderly and those who came up short as children and young people," she adds.

Modesty is not a necessary virtue

Novomatic is trying to recruit employees over 40 in a targeted manner. "Because they bring experience and stability with them," explains Vera Futter-Mehringer, head of group personnel and authorized signatory at Novomatic. The company tries to give its employees a "family", she explains. It is not about interfering with the private life of the employees, but rather that employees can count on the support of the company in the event of problems. This does not require any great company agreements, but a code of conduct that promotes appreciative togetherness.

For Prehofer, modesty is not a necessary virtue in his job. "Because women are often much too modest anyway." Much more important are common sense and healthy self-confidence, says Prehofer. The willingness to change - from geographical mobility to new qualifications to a change of industry - will continue to be important in the future. "To do this, companies have to offer further training in a more disinterested way," adds Prehofer.

Karmasin agrees that education will be an important requirement for the future. However, the state must start funding earlier and, above all, invest money in this area. At the same time, she sees a growing gap between the good and bad environment in which children grow up. That shouldn't come as a surprise. "One cannot complain that there are less and less well-behaved and educated young people, and at the same time, television is promoting lower-class television that shows exactly the opposite." (Gudrun Ostermann, DER STANDARD, print edition, May 7/8, 2011)