Our Relationship with an Employer


The characteristics of the Federalist citizen are fairly descriptive of my work relationship.  In order to elaborate as to why, I will look at the essence of the Federalist citizen  as presented by Jacques (1996):  The Federalist citizen was a master craftsman that entered wage work as a means to another end, that considered dependence on the organization a debased state, that believed sub-ordination to be un-American, that made complete products and was paid for outcomes, that believed in the omni-competence of the average person, that considered it a perquisite and basic criterion of adult participation in society to speak one’s truth knowledgeably, and that unified the roles of business person and politician, domestic and paid worker, and producer and consumer.

 Jacques (1996) states that the modern professional has “…roots stretching back to the middle ages,” and “whose authority is grounded in specific occupational knowledge” (p. 89). As an industry certified information systems professional, I satisfy Jacques’ definition.  While I am not omni-competent, I am multi-competent in my field and am expected to speak truth knowledgably.  Like most professionals I know, I find it difficult to accept low level sub-ordination and am more loyal to my profession than to any particular company.  This is in stark contrast to the industrial employee who is characterized as being the good, permanent employee, resigned to a specific task at a fixed wage, the sub-ordinate, the ignorant, childlike, encoded self.  As a result, my work relationship clearly has more in common with the Federalist citizen than the industrial employee.

Reference:

Jacques, R. (1996). Manufacturing the employee: Management knowledge from the 19th to 21st centuries. London: Sage Publications.

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