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    #192467 - 05/27/14 08:51 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: VR00]
    ultramarina Offline
    Member

    Registered: 08/24/10
    Posts: 3428
    Quote:
    We discuss how job pay rates are tied to unique or unusual skills.


    Welllll...maybe.

    My DH has some very unique scientific skills that required years of study and some unusual ability. Unfortunately, the world does not pay people well for these skills.

    I could certainly come up with other examples...

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    #192468 - 05/27/14 09:02 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: VR00]
    HowlerKarma Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/05/11
    Posts: 5181
    Yes, SOME unique skills are much more highly compensated than others.
    _________________________
    Schrödinger's cat walks into a bar. And doesn't.

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    #192469 - 05/27/14 09:12 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: VR00]
    Dude Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/04/11
    Posts: 2856
    Skills are just as prone to nonsensical pricing as anything else in the market, because the market is people, and people are often irrational.

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    #192475 - 05/27/14 09:39 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: 22B]
    Tallulah Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/25/10
    Posts: 480
    I don't think anyone could argue that lawyering and banking are unique skills, but they're [SPAM] highly compensated.

    Originally Posted By: 22B
    Originally Posted By: VR00
    But she retorted how come we own a XYZ (XYZ being a clear marker) if we are not rich.


    Some people who own a XYZ aren't rich. They're just up their eyeballs in debt.


    Possibly true, but I don't teach my children to make that assumption. Instead we talk about values and choices and priorities. If my priority was to own a private plane I would make that happen, probably by doing a job I don't enjoy (everything I like pays peanuts) and sacrificing other things. The comparison in child terms can be as simple as having a cheap bike and a scooter or a really nice bike. Or hours of a parent away from home, ie: if we wanted to have xyz, Daddy would have to stay at work for an extra hour every day (spurious, because he's not hourly, but helps then understand the tradeoffs in spending).


    Edited by Tallulah (05/27/14 09:41 AM)

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    #192483 - 05/27/14 10:40 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: VR00]
    Thomas Percy Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/18/12
    Posts: 206
    I do think we have to be careful about teaching our children to only pursue what they love. I was deeply influenced by such thinking as a child. You know, the kind of quotes such as "I never did a day's work in my life. It was all fun." One danger is that sometimes what they love is not practical. Another danger is that no matter how much you love something it is hard to maintain that love if you have to do it professionally.

    I was practical enough to get into a profession that provides a good life style. I cannot say that my job don't feel like work. Assuming working as a highly educated individual, all of our work has certain consumption value, but with exception of the truly few lucky ones, we are working for a paycheck to provide for our kids and family in our lifestyle. I think most of us wouldn't stay in our profession on a full time basis if we are independently wealthy. I know I won't. I hope my child will know that it is noble to put in a day's work to support himself and his family. Of course, I hope he chooses wisely and find something he is good at and enjoys most of the time. But I hope he does not have the kind of disappointment that I had when I was younger for not being able to love working as much as other leisure activities.

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    #192489 - 05/27/14 11:09 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: VR00]
    cmguy Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/30/14
    Posts: 387
    http://o.seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/businesstechnology/2020645607_bizburns14xml.html

    A helpful 4 question "wealth test":

    4) You are at a cocktail party and a stranger asks, “What do you do?”

    [if you are wealthy] The only acceptable answer here is to remember your Jane Austen. Give the stranger your best disdainful Darcy look and say, “In the event of what?”

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    #192496 - 05/27/14 11:44 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: VR00]
    HowlerKarma Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/05/11
    Posts: 5181
    grin LOVE that.
    _________________________
    Schrödinger's cat walks into a bar. And doesn't.

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    #192498 - 05/27/14 11:52 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: VR00]
    aquinas Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2513
    Originally Posted By: tallulah
    I don't think anyone could argue that lawyering and banking are unique skills, but they're [SPAM] highly compensated.


    I'll bite. Good, effective, knowledgeable lawyers and bankers are unique and can create substantial economic value. It takes a lot of skill, experience, dedication, and interpersonal skills to turn one of those professions into a successful, long-term career, especially at the international level. Just like with any knowledge-based industry, people at the forefront have to be innovators and effective leaders, and those skills certainly aren't abundant when you've already whittled down the field to folks who:

    A) Have (a) relevant degree(s) and knowledge (CAUTION: credentials =/= knowledge!)
    B) Are socially adept, particularly in environments filled with hostile personalities
    C) Are willing to work 90+ hour weeks for the rest of their lives
    D) Like what they do

    As with anything in life, you get what you pay for. Firms take a gamble that they won't choose a lemon and have to pay well to attract real talent. There are a lot of lousy bankers and lawyers out there masquerading as good ones, which colours the perception of the professions.

    Now, you won't hear me saying that other professions--like scientific researchers, roboticists, or educators-- who are paid less are somehow less noble. We just live with the reality that markets can only effectively compensate what they value and aren't myopic enough to fail to observe/ foresee. (And that's assuming some benevolent government dictator hasn't made a dog's breakfast of market dynamics already, which further muddies market foresight.)

    The reasons bankers and lawyers are paid well relative to their value creation are liquidity and measurability. Their output is money, which has immediately and universally recognizable value and doesn't need to be converted through a subjective utility function. The second you enter the realm of heterogeneous subjective valuations, uncertainty, myopia, and different intertemporal discounting factors, prices won't reflect the intrinsic value of the activity. Try rallying the same consensus around the discovery of an exoplanet or a new dinosaur fossil. Humans are terrible...with a capital T!... at valuing the future and placing estimates on improbable events.

    So, to the point of the thread, hopefully our children will choose a set of career paths (deliberately plural) that they at least enjoy, because most of us will be underpaid relative to the intrinsic value of our work at almost anything we do. At the heart of this, IMO, is building a diverse skill set that blends personally gratifying and technical abilities.
    _________________________
    What is to give light must endure burning.

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    #192499 - 05/27/14 11:55 AM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: cmguy]
    aquinas Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2513
    Originally Posted By: cmguy
    http://o.seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/businesstechnology/2020645607_bizburns14xml.html

    A helpful 4 question "wealth test":

    4) You are at a cocktail party and a stranger asks, “What do you do?”

    [if you are wealthy] The only acceptable answer here is to remember your Jane Austen. Give the stranger your best disdainful Darcy look and say, “In the event of what?”


    Put that on a t-shirt! smile (Says the woman who has bought her husband shirts with jokes about Schrodinger's Cat and thorium.)


    Edited by aquinas (05/27/14 11:59 AM)
    _________________________
    What is to give light must endure burning.

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    #192501 - 05/27/14 12:05 PM Re: Affluenza Concerns [Re: aquinas]
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2636
    Loc: MA
    Originally Posted By: aquinas
    Originally Posted By: tallulah
    I don't think anyone could argue that lawyering and banking are unique skills, but they're [SPAM] highly compensated.


    I'll bite. Good, effective, knowledgeable lawyers and bankers are unique and can create substantial economic value. It takes a lot of skill, experience, dedication, and interpersonal skills to turn one of those professions into a successful, long-term career, especially at the international level. Just like with any knowledge-based industry, people at the forefront have to be innovators and effective leaders, and those skills certainly aren't abundant when you've already whittled down the field to folks who:

    A) Have (a) relevant degree(s) and knowledge (CAUTION: credentials =/= knowledge!)
    B) Are socially adept, particularly in environments filled with hostile personalities
    C) Are willing to work 90+ hour weeks for the rest of their lives

    I agree with most of what aquinas wrote about law and finance, but one reason to work long hours in these fields in your 20s and 30s is to be able to retire or at least downshift in your 40s. Also, the hours of traders (as opposed to bankers) are usually not that long in my experience. Shortly after the markets close, they go home.

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