Peter Auger, Auburn Hills City Manager
Thoughts on running a city, daily musings, and everything in between.
City Manager, Auburn Hills, MI
Interesting question I heard over this “labor day weekend”. On the first Monday of September, we honor the workers who built the world’s strongest economy with a day off. I asked the question, am I considered a worker?
I think I stumped some people. “No, not really.” Hmmmm….
Some say it’s a “union holiday” and everyone else is just riding on the union workers backs.
Made me curious of when I left the classification of worker. I started working at about 9 years old and in my simple mind haven’t stop working. I still go to work five days a week and hopefully still add value to our organization. To me, that’s what work is, adding value that someone is willing to pay you for. An example is that I am trading an hour of my life (a known limited quantity) for something of value (a dollar amount and benefits, another known limited quantity).
Now granted I have had may jobs growing up (insert joke here about me not growing up) from delivering milk on a milk truck (anyone remember Twin Pines?), paper route, shoveling snow, cutting lawns, construction work, working the assembly line, landscaping, armed services, semi professional athlete, night security, police officer, running a trade association and CEO of a few organizations.
I take pride in the all the jobs I have had, but equally I am proud that I continue to learn new skills and have the ability to adapt to new challenges as any other worker should be.
This prospect of people being able to capitalize on their work effort has drawn people to our shores to pursue new opportunities and dreams of a better life. The demands on our workers have changed over the generations, but we as American’s have always risen to the occasion.
During the Industrial Age, factory workers saw their knowledge and paychecks grow as they mastered new processes to mass produce everything from automobiles to armaments. That still is there today. Following World War II, it is estimated that more than 6 million women joined the workforce. Now the Internet age carried the talents of our workers across the globe, as our ideas and products reached new markets and brought younger workers into new jobs or replaced workers who do not possess the same skill sets.
The same transitions have been happening in local governments. Local governments continue to pursue a variety of actions to deal with their fiscal problems, including increasing intergovernmental collaboration, increasing their reliance on general fund balances, and shifting more of their health care costs to be paid by their employees.
I am a little concerned about all the labeling that is going on, seems more like a sporting match than American workers continuing to advance society…
Ok, I’ll put my soap box back in the closet.
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