East vs West: Mentality difference concerning work

In the West, it is normal for even a manager at a workplace to sweep, mop, change garbage and believe it or not, clean the toilet. Westerners don’t see any kind of work as beyond them. For the average Pakistani or Indian, even getting a glass of water is demeaning. There are chaprasis, office boys or maids/servants to do the “dirty” work.

Even as far as jobs are concerned, people care about how much you earn. It isn’t what a person does that defines them. No one is ridiculed for the work they do, as long as they do it honestly and deligently.

At gorcery stores, there are many times when I have seen a manager bag other people’s groceries. Can this ever happen in the subcontinent? Let alone sweeping, cleaning the toilet etc.

Even behaviour at home is different. You will not find a man in the West sit with a newspaper every morning on the couch while his wife serves him tea…err…coffee.

1 thought on “East vs West: Mentality difference concerning work”

  1. When I was a lot younger I needed a job, so I answered an ad that wanted a “degreed individual” to be number 2 on a field job for an industrial construction company. It didn’t seem to matter that I had an Art degree; I could read, and I could start something and finish it.

    I had every right to sit on my butt in my air-conditioned office trailer after I’d finished my paperwork, which took about half my time. But number 1, the Superintendent, was a WORKER. He was one like you describe, Mohammad, and he inspired me to get up and DO. I counted bolts, changed tires, welded and ground the welds, unloaded trucks full of steel, cut bricks, smashed eighty-year-old concrete with a 10-lb. sledgehammer, chased loafers and put them back to work, drove a bull-dozer, repaired broken machinery, and anything else that needed to be done. I sweated like a hog and got dirty as hell, ate like a horse and slept like the dead and loved every minute of it.

    Because of an inspiring leader, I’ve never worked so hard, made so much pay, or learned so much. We worked seven twelve-hour-days (for us management it meant fourteen hours a day) for three months straight. It was a great habit to get into.

    I was only following number 1; I found out later that many of the other guys were following me, too, and working as hard as I did. Our company made money and got the job done. We (and I) got hired back for other campaigns, too. They’re still in business, but now they don’t just rebuild the glass-furnaces, they build the whole factory, and hire not hundreds of men, but thousands.

    How ya doin’, Bill Runion, number 1, best boss I ever had, wherever you are now?

    Lead by example.


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