They need us more than we need them

Time and time again we hear of CEO’s and upper management taking home nearly 50 to 100 times more than those on the lower rungs of the ‘corporate ladder.’ According to Canadian Business Insider, the top 100 CEO’s of Canada brought home an annual salary of approximately 9.5 million dollars, which is a whopping 193 times more than the average annual wage of a Canadian! [1]

Now a common rebuttal to this statement is that CEO’s who have better degrees and subsequently a higher education, deserve a higher wage. Which MAY be true in SOME cases, but it is factual that not ALL CEO’s work 193 times harder than your average Canadian.

In our capitalist society, wages and promotions are not given due to merit or hard work. It is NOT the case that those who work hardest and produce the most results get the highest pay.

From working recreation to retail to construction, myself and others in Generation Y, have seen that it is not what you know these days but more so who you know. [2] So, is it the case that these CEO’s enter into their position of power due to merit and hard work, or is it due to them knowing the right people, and kissing the right babies?

Now let’s suppose in this Utopia we live in that these high level executives have reached their place of superiority due to merit. When they enter into this executive role, do they continue to work just as hard? Do they honestly deserve such a high wage when some Canadian families are struggling to make ends meet? Do they consistently work 193 times harder than an average Canadian? And is it even remotely possible for others along the corporate ladder to achieve such a high status?

More often than not the answer is no. Very rarely do we see CEO’s, principals [3] or managers give up their wage to ensure that those ‘beneath’ them are making their fair share.

So what can we do?

We are the oil and grease that allows the giant wheels of the system to turn. We are the key players in this one-sided game. We are the ones helping the CEO’s make millions of dollars. And as a result, we are the same people who are limiting our own resources.

Instead of fighting each other, we need to band together to focus on the real enemy. It is not each other that we should be worried about, rather we should be concerned about those hoarding money, resources and necessities from us.

There are way more employees than CEO’s. There are way more staff than managers. So what is it that we can do to ensure that we get our fair share?

Unions. The IDEA of unions.

If we all decided to stop working right now, what can the upper echelon do? Shut down the whole system to hire and train new staff? Hope that one or two of us changes our minds? Beg for our return with the offer of same if not slightly better wages? It’s simply too cumbersome for them, and not worth it for us.

Now suppose they do such things, how effective is it going to be? How quickly can upper management train these new employees and get the ship upright once more? How long until we realize that the 50 cent increase in our hourly wages isn’t enough? And how much longer will we stand to see managers and executives roll into work in Mercedes and Bentleys whilst the majority of others is stuck taking buses and trains.

Now suppose once again that they do right this ship. How will it look when a majority of their employees are striking outside of where they work? How will it look when media shines a light on corporations whose employees are LITERALLY outside railing against them?

Strikes and unions DO work; whether it’s teaching assistants [4] , nurses, or garbage collectors; when the little fishes band together and fight for what they deserve, results will appear and even sharks and killer whales can get eaten alive.

It is time to get rewarded for the hard work you put in.

If you truly believe that a wage should be judged based on merit, and not the suit you wear or the piece of paper you hold, then stand up, band together and defend yourselves.

If we all decided to stop working, the system stops running. Banks shut down. Grocery stores stop working. Gas stations stop becoming effective.

They need us more than we need them.

[1] http://www.canadianbusiness.com/lists-and-rankings/richest-people/canada-100-highest-paid-ceos/

[2] https://newsgathererblog.wordpress.com/2017/01/02/its-not-what-you-know-its-who-you-know/

[3] http://www.takepart.com/article/2014/08/05/kentucky-state-university-president-gives-90000-his-own-salary-so-low-paid/

[4] https://www.theguardian.com/education/2016/oct/10/teaching-assistants-derby-durham-striking-new-contracts-pay-cuts

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