Ten Things About Work We’ve Learned From COVID-19

Ten Things About Work We’ve Learned From COVID-19 May 11, 2020

  1. “Essential” does not mean “well-paid.” Frequently it means just the opposite.
  2. Many things most essential to being human turn out to be things that require close human contact and breathing the same air – changing bedpans, performing Hamilton, the Eucharist.
  3. The creating of art (and the funding of art by its consumers) turns out to be surprisingly central to life.
  4. People actually do want to work – sometimes just to feed their families, and sometimes also for the joy of the work itself.
  5. It’s easier* to just give people money and trust them to do the right thing with it than we thought it was. *(Conceptually, that is. The Treasury seems to have a lot of difficulty actually getting it where it’s going.)
  6. We have forgotten how to do a lot of things for ourselves.
  7. “Knowledge work” depends on a whole lot of not-knowledge-work happening around it.
  8. Pretty much everything about our previous workplaces was unsustainable.
  9. Pretty much everything about the COVID workplace is unsustainable too, which means we’ve set a pretty puzzle for ourselves.
  10. This must not actually be the disaster movie apocalypse, because people are still collecting the weekly garbage (AND I BLESS THEM FOR IT.)

Image: Unsplash


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