Broken-down Poetry: My Summer as a Striped-Collar Worker, Pt. 2: Incentives


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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

My Summer as a Striped-Collar Worker, Pt. 2: Incentives

We all respond to incentives, said Stephen Levitt in Freakonomics. I guess that's so.


Before people respond to incentives they weigh the benefits against the costs. With my job at BF Goodrich, I had to do the same. Except, my dad made me make my decision before I really thought it through. Hmm... was this a mistake?

* The Costs *

Both days of orientation contained a wild deluge of safety dos and don'ts. It reminded me of that episode of The Office when the guys upstairs go to the warehouse to learn about all the rules about not touching this and that. It was very similar, except I watched tons (and tons and tons) of videos.

They should've just made a 10 Commandments of rules and I it would've saved 'em some time. Observe.

1. DO NOT touch anything hot.

2. DO NOT stick your hand inside a machine if it's running.

3. DO NOT run in front of a forklift

4. DO NOT hit someone with a forklift

5. DO NOT sleep/gamble/drink/horseplay on the job

6. DO wear steel-toed shoes ALWAYS

7. DO wear ear-plugs ALWAYS

8. 9. 10. (You get the picture)

* The Benefits *

This pretty much has everything to do with money.

I will be working between 42-48 hours a week, which means at least two hours will be paid overtime (time and a half).

Since the hours suck, they have special rewards known as "shift premiums" that add on addition cents per hour. So even working the day shift you make an extra $10 a day. Night shifters like me will earn about $20 more.

Holidays are paid as time and a half, even if you aren't scheduled to work (you get at least 8 hours pay).

If your overtime is a holiday you get double time.

Oh, and the rate isn't $10.00 and hour, it's $13.068.

[That's a little more than IP.]

Not to mention the fact that I get to drive a "tugger" for 12 hours a day--how fun! And I get 10 minute breaks every two hours, and a half-hour break after 6... but as my trainer said, stock poolers (like myself) get extra long breaks if they're ahead of schedule.

And I get a cool swipey tag. And a water bottle. And a locker, all to myself!

** ** **

Notice my justification. I like to tell myself the job is going to be way more exciting that it actually is. I guess once I get my first paycheck of $416 (before taxes) I'll feel a little bit better about myself.


So, no news from Nea Matia. I'm a little concerned because Beverley likes staying in touch like none other. But, I am ahead of the game. I got one of next week's assignment done and asked for the information concerning the other one. Maybe these next two days I can rest before work on Friday night. (Gotta love the swing shift).

Oh yeah, back to incentives.

** The Costs **

Carpel Tunnel: I think I'm getting it in my right wrist. I have one of those pads on my laptop rather than a mouse so I constantly use my middle finger to move the cursor around. It's starting to hurt really bad.

Working as a Freelancer is tough if you like order and stability. Honestly, I'm glad that my boss Beverley is very organized and has certain deadlines for me or I'd be all over the place. It's hard to stay focused if you have no direction.

The money isn't the greatest either. I mean, you make a website for a nice rate maybe, but updates are typically monthly at best. So you get a nice lump sum that'll last you till your next trip to Starbucks.

** The Benefits **

I can wake up whenever I like, wear whatever I want, eat while I'm working, take as many breaks as I like, peruse facebook when I'm bored... and have fun.

Because honestly, it's fun making websites and flyers for people.

I do occasionally have to go into Beverley's office to pick something up and whatnot. Then I have to look nice, but it's downtown and I LOVE going downtown. Last time I went into work I got a hotdog from Coney Island first. MMmm, totally worth it.

And then there's that little thing I like to call NETWORKING. Working for a private business like Nea Matia will get me strong references, making me just another step closer to the RELE-world.

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