On Sunday Times today, the newspaper came out with a controversial article that has raised a few eyebrows and backlashes from the public.
Amongst my small circle group of friends, they were mostly grouped who comes from the line of art, engineer, lawyer, healthcare, research, human resource, financial advisors, IT, bankers, entrepreneur and self-employed.
Apart from healthcare, most belong to the group of non-essential jobs that ST has identified, yet these are jobs that most people are likely to rake in the biggest chunk of money home and are the mostly sought after courses in the university.
NMP Economist Walter Theseira said in his interview that it is hard to separate interest from compensation, as most graduates are convinced to pursue courses in the university that has the highest salary potential or lifestyle associated with the job once they graduate.
As an interviewer for student admissions, he is often amazed by the number of people who told him during the interview sincerely that they found accounting interesting and the reason for pursuing the course is pure out of passion.
Having been an accountant myself for close to 12 years, I can say that it’s almost close to impossible that one would pursue an accounting course out of pure passion. While having that knowledge is nice (as with any other roles), accounting as a job itself is pure Fifty-Shades-of-Grey slavery. What comes as a big plus is the perception being an iron rice bowl with guaranteed job security and steady stream of income and benefits.
So coming back to the article itself, perhaps it’s wiser to have things defined as an immediate essentials vs non-immediate essentials rather comparing it as essentials vs non-essentials.
Immediate essentials – as the name implies, are things that require immediate attention, so you have things like doctors, nurses, garbage collectors and deliverymen (during circuit breaker) providing services that attend to your immediate needs.
The non-immediate essentials role like business consultants, teachers, support teams like finance and HR, sales or pilots are also essential jobs. These people help to rebuild businesses and people to retain and retrain and their roles are not less effective than the essential jobs. What differs them is that they may not be as vital as an immediate concerns for the next 24 hours.
Perhaps the definition of essentials vs non-essentials may also be different in different times. For example, if we are in a war situation right now, you are likely to see an increase importance in army and soldiers and much lesser on garbage collectors and delivery men. So the paradigm might shift and we are all on this together to make up a good round community together.
The insensitive article from ST might also be an agenda to push for another round of minimum or universal basic income, based on the current Maslow’s hierarchical of needs, which will surely be raised from the opposition during the election rally not any longer from now.
If only, things were defined better, I think we could get most of the readers to accept how the article is being written.
The next time my boss asked me to do things urgently, I will tell her that my role is non-essential, okay?
Thanks for reading.
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