Archive for the ‘Society’ Category

Passion in the market and job market

Monday, March 31st, 2008

The word ‘passion’ has become very popular in the temporary market and job market: a company tries to persuade us that it is not simply the best, but that it works on its commissions or products with passion; an employer expects that the working person does not do his job only because of the money, not because he likes it or is enthusiastic about it, but with passion, the highest motivation of all.

It is also broadly believed that somebody who has a passion, should work on it professionally, because this is meant to be the best condition for a job: you enjoy what you do and get the greatest financial profit out of it (here it is assumed that passionate working persons are good in their field as well).

Therefore the one that offers a position and the one who looks for it believe not only that the qualifications of the candidate should suit the offered job (and vice versa), but that the position and the qualifications are in accordance with the presumed passion of the applicant.

This fact is very misleading from both perspectives (employee/employer). A work position has two characteristics for the working person: at first, the freedom that it offers is always restricted and second, it does not exist for the pleasure of the working person. These two features are not compatible with any passion and the result is the partial or total restriction of it.

I will give here a typical example for this case. During my music studies I was acquainted with many musicians that studied an orchestra instrument. All of them decided to become musicians not because they wanted to make money, but because they had a passion for it. After their studies most of them found a job in an orchestra, after being selected among many others. There they had rather to obey conductors (who were sometimes worse musicians than them) than being creative, and to go through a tiring repetition of the repertory. If they could not find a second job of higher demands, most of them would prefer the artistic death in favour of the financial security; but this is exactly the opposite principle of their initial decision. A person with less or no passion would suit this job better.

Therefore a passionate person should either look for a job that offers great freedom, e.g. a high position, or work independently of employers. I think that the only exception here is the passion for money; this can work everywhere.

On the other hand, people that have passion for something, are not easily accepted by the others. They are so concentrated in their passion, that they neglect themselves, their other activities and the persons close to them. The passion functions as a drug, it gives them enormous pleasure (sometimes at high costs) and makes the rest of the world appearing boring to them.

So why is our market full of passion? I think that there are two reasons for it.

First, in conditions of a very competitive market besides qualification, and efficiency, the factor motivation has become very important. In terms of continuous inconstancy, high motivation keeps efficiency constant. The great competition leads to states of burn out situations of the working and to a great variety of the supply, so there is a demand for further motivation and attraction resources (“money is not enough when we make money and a product is something more than a product”). Passion here is demanded, as its motivation is independent of external factors. But efficiency presumes control, and controlled passion is not passion any more (maybe enthusiasm would suit here better), and on the other hand, passionate people are hard to control or to cooperate with.

Second, all people want to experience or to watch other people experience strong feelings, especially in times and places where they can live an ordinary life (without wars, deceases, poverty, etc, i.e. when they do not have serious problems). An ordinary life can be extremely boring, so passion is in high demand (as an illusion as well).

But passion cannot be hidden or ordered. It does not accept rules, for it is the rule itself. The excessive supply and demand of ‘passion’ leads to unreliability and final exclusion of it (as every excessive use).