Work and jobs
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Work and jobs What do people really want from their jobs? The most frequent answer is money. But there are also many people who are satisfied with a small salary when they have a grand title. Yes, there are many people who want to be called director of this, controller of that or manager of the other. At present the most of modern jobs seem to have an economic character. The most typical job with economic character is a manager or a secretary. A good secretary must be able not only to type and take shorthand but she also be able to look after her boss in a number of ways. On the contrary a good manager must be patient and must not regret doing overtime. A lot of people study commercial schools to become a manager or a secretary. After all work is in an office often paid much higher than other sorts of jobs. But now the economic jobs begin to be crowded. Manual work is difficult but it is not paid as much as other kinds of work. There are many types of craftsmen, for example, bakers, drivers, cleaners, cooks, waiters, hair stylists and shop assistants. The less common jobs are paid higher. It might be, for example, work connected with film and art, such as playwrights, writers, actors, singers and reporters. There are also political jobs like presidents, ministers, senators, judges and diplomats. And of course many others, for example teachers, doctors, guides. You can be employed in a state company or in a private company or you can have your own business. You can work in industry, in agriculture or in the services (banks, stock markets, hotels and insurance companies). XXX In a modern society practically everybody below retirement age has a job of some kind. Women who are not employed because they want to take care of small children at home must be regarded as working people too. Only few people live, no matter where they are, on unearned incomes from rents, investments, or interest on their savings (or rather, the money in their bank account). Of course in all types of societies there have always been some people who wanted to get rich quick and to get something for nothing, not hesitating to cheat or even steal and rob other people. But the overwhelming majority makes their living by honest work, working hard during the whole working week. In the Czech Republic this has been 42 ½ hours, since free Saturdays were introduced in the 1960s. In Britain the standard weekly hours of work are 35-40, but many people, particularly in manual occupations, work overtime sometimes. At the weekends the Czechs are not idle either, making various improvements in their homes and gardens, building new houses or summer cottages for their families. Workmen may moonlight to earn some extra money. White-collar workers here usually start work in the morning. Industrial workers, miners and people in various other jobs are often on a shift system: this ensures that the expensive machinery in their plants and mines is fully exploited. Many people in this country do not like the idea of working in the evening or, even worse, at night. The English, though they are ready to work until late in the afternoon, are not inclined to work at various odd hours of the day and night either, as bus drivers and conductors or waiters have to. That is why many immigrants from the West Indies and Asia are found in jobs in these occupations with irregular working hours. The employment of women and young people at night is prohibited in heavy industry in Britain as well as in the Czech Republic. Wages in Britain are calculated by the hour, day, or week, and are normally received in the form of cash; salaries, earned by more highly qualified employees and fixed on a monthly or yearly basis, are generally paid monthly straight into the employees’ bank accounts. Sometimes payday in the Czech Republic can be twice a month; in the middle of the month people get an advance, an approximation of their earnings and early in the next month they get the rest. The pay packet contains a slip with several figures. From these data the employees can check the size of his gross earnings and his net earnings. The difference between the two is the tax that has been deducted. Family allowances are provided for families with children below certain age limits, both here and in Britain. In Britain the remuneration in commercial, technical, and professional careers is better than that for manual workers. In the Czech Republic the range of wages and salaries is smaller, but of course the salary in a senior post is much higher than a starting salary. The earnings of star entertainers and certain other successful people exceed the earnings of many persons in top-ranking managerial posts in industry and commerce. In addition to their basic pay people may get various fringe benefits, such as cheap meals in work canteens or luncheon vouchers for meals in restaurants, subsidized holidays, or cheap flats. Social security in Britain includes such things as sickness benefit, a three-to-four-week holiday pay, a retirement pension, maternity grant and maternity allowance, and unemployment benefit.