Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Value of (My) Time

I did a guest post a couple of weeks ago over at debtkids website. It's something I feel really strongly about and since (most of) the readers on this blog have been with me since I started I thought I would share it with you.
Basically, as this year has gone by, I have become more and more disenchanted with my job. I get paid well by the average American's standards. 62k a year in my first year on the job. However, my job is one that feels it's okay to ask employees to work 16-18 hr days 7 days a week. Our weekends do not belong to us and you are considered a write off if you leave before 7pm. I have heard about and seen peoples marriage, relationships, and friendships deteriorate because of this job. One day I decided to calculate how much I got paid an hour - $15!

You're telling me that if I went to work as an assistant manager at McDonald's and worked the same hours, I'd make the same? That's crazy. One of my coworkers left my job to go to medical school. He figured if he was going to work these hours, he might as well get paid more. I totally get where he is coming from. I have decided that my time is worth way more than that. Which means I'm scouting for other opportunities right now.

It's not just the time i put in that's bothering me. It's the fact that I'd like to get another job that I can use specifically to pay my debts and speed up my debt free day but I can't. I am basically chained to the whims and caprices of seniors and managers that might decide they need me to come in and make copies on a saturday morning.

I think we definitely all should take the time to figure out if we are getting paid what we deserve. I know that the economy is tough and jobs are kind of scarce but it's not a reason to stay in a position that you don't feel you an grow in.


  1. I couldn't agree more with you!
    Frankly, I found your blog yesterday and read all the story. It's like I was reading my own words few years after with the difference that I'm in Europe…

    And now again :)
    I know the feeling, I've spent 4 years in the place that everyone was jealous off... And what? My bosses thought I should have been glad that I had this pleasure to work there... At any time they wanted me to ;) As I was so young - 23 years old as you - and fresh to the business :) And I had neither husband nor children so for them I had no life :) I was all theirs...
    Maybe it was worth getting the experience, but seriously I never was as relieved as when I left… Just wait for the right possibility. I know I have my current job because of my good reputation in the previous office but finally, I'm paid better and treated like a human , not a machine….

    Oh, and I just paid off all my debts this month… You'll see, you'll manage before 30 too! I really cross my fingers!

  2. Hmm, I agree with your concept of the value of your time. I think you do work a lot of hours for your salary. However, are you basing you calculation on just your salary alone, or on your total compensation (including benefits, bonuses, etc)?

    I am not sure of the industry in which you work, but in my industry, we work many hours as well and much of the upside comes in your annual bonus. If it is a good year, we are compensated quite well. If not, we need to tough it out for the year.

    Just a little food for thought :)

  3. I feel I can't grow in my current job at all. The only location that ever has job openings is ran by my friend and the high ups would never allow it ( although I feel we'd be an awesome team!) I have a weird feeling they feel threatened by me somehow working on my bachelors ( although they all have a high education degree.) And, the competing non-profit in town would never higher me because I work for this one now. I've been looking into opportunities and I'm even considering writing short stories or articles.

    It's good that you are considering your options. I feel as people no one wants to be pigeon holed. We all need room to grow.

  4. @ inthemoney - I'm basing this just on my salary. I'm not sure how my benefits rank as I haven't had many other jobs to compare it to...
    Unfortunately, my industry is not one that gives bonuses (part of my frustration). I avoided Investment banking because of the hours (but at least they get great bonuses - or used to anyway) and it's annoying to work those hours now without monetary compensation.

    If i wanted to be happy just because of the work itself, I'd work for myself....


Hit me with some tough love