On Nov. 14, The Times published "Workers Unhappy Despite Their Employers' Rosy Claims." During the past month, we have heard increasing news on this subject, including "Corporate Carrots" (Feb. 7) in which U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich's proposed tax breaks for "good corporate citizenship" and Tom Petruno's Feb. 19 column, "Has 'Greed' Supplanted 'Shareholder Value?' "
As a matter of fact, in my 40 years of private practice as a psychotherapist I have never before observed the universal demoralization, dissatisfaction and feeling of hopelessness that has been growing rapidly during the last decade among almost all my patients who are not self-employed.
A simplified version of what I have observed is:
A company feels a financial pinch.
It brings in highly paid "experts."
These experts must save the company more money than they cost.
They try to discover the absolute least number of employees necessary to handle the minimal functions of the company.
Rather brutal layoffs take place repeatedly and without warning, leaving the remaining employees increasingly insecure.
The employees that are left are under terrible strain since they must work to the limit of their capacity just to keep the company functioning.