Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Panda Bear on Sick Time and Volunteering

The Panda Bear Blog is a blog about not having it all. It is a blog for stressed out average people who feel the “experts” somehow just don’t get the average person lives.

In a previous post, the Panda Bear was complaining about how even when she does not feel well, physicians won’t write her sick notes for work and her employers want them if she is out more than a couple of days. (Please note the Panda Bear on the whole has been in good health and the longest time she has been out sick from work in twenty-seven years has been a week).

The Panda Bear had maligned her present employer. After taking two days off from for an upper respiratory infection for which her physician said she could return to work, the Panda Bear’s supervisor said she could have taken a third day off. The supervisor said she would not require the Panda Bear to get a note for up to five days taken off for illness. The supervisor told the Panda Bear that she would rather the Panda Bear be out and not spread her germs at work. The Panda Bear thanked her supervisor and told her she had worked for two organizations where all time taken off for illnesses lowered a person’s attendance ratings.

The Panda Bear’s apartment is a mess because for several weeks the Panda Bear only had the energy to work and come home. The Panda Bear feels varying energy levels and illness is something that much time management theory ignores. The kitchen table broke this morning. The Panda Bear and Mr. Panda will now have to get unexpectedly a new kitchen table this weekend. Something always seems to happen to foil the best laid time management schemes. While at work, this week the Panda Bear was listening an show on NPR called  Radio Boston where some professors of business from such excellent schools such Yale and Wharton which claimed that people who volunteered felt like they had more free time than people who worked that did not volunteer. These professors said the act of volunteering gave people the illusion that they had more free time.

Now the Panda Bear is all for volunteering.She has done volunteering while has she worked full-time. In addition, the experience the pleasure of working for what the Panda Bear feels are good causes, the Panda Bear has experienced other personal benefits. She has developed new skills and met new people. It has lead to contacts that have provided her with references for paid work. Volunteering can be a much nicer experience than paid employment because people know that one would only do it if one was not being nicely treated.

However, the Panda Bear does not feel that volunteering has made her feel that she has more free time. The Panda Bear has question several of her friends about whether their volunteering increased their feeling that they have more free time. Everyone said no. While volunteering may have some positive benefits, it did not make them feel like they had more free time. The Panda Bear feels that these college professors have no idea what it is to work on a time clock which the Panda Bear does. Furthermore, volunteering shows how American workers have less and less free time. At one time many companies had programs where people could volunteer on work time. Even if companies did not provide the actual work time, they supported employees efforts to volunteer because they thought it made the organization look good. Now most organizations want total commitment from their employees.

1 comment:

  1. Volunteering must be an enjoyable experience in terms of the hours, location, activity, etc. Otherwise, it will feel too much like work.