The following cartoon from Gilbert, at the apparent level may be hilarious showing how the priorities of the Management is in conflict with the Super-skilled workforce under the employ of the Company.
But at the quantum level, it is the age old issue of the conflict that arises between the DOER and the person or a body of persons who promise a third person that THEY WOULD GET IT DONE.
The Getting it Doner has been provided with resources from the shareholder in respect of the company, which is supposed to be deployed for the bringing forth of the product.
The persons who have to plan and execute the manufacturing of the Product are highly skilled people who work not merely on the ‘resources’ provided, but on the skills of those super skilled personnel who besides brining their skills have to be inspired to channelise their creativity for inventing a product and designing it for mass production so that before the copy cats steal their intellectual property, at least the company would remain solvent.
In this scenario, the trouble starts when the Super-skilled innovator is given a lot of pep talk by the management, without realising the demands made on the Time of those super skilled personnel and the lack of recognition which would ensue once the product is brought out successfully. How many people know the ‘innovators’ of those incremental inventions made on a regular basis without which the quantum leap would not have been possible? Whereas, the Top Management which had acquired funds through promise built on chicanery, claims all the credit for the product and leaves out those who had contributed through their intellectual commitment.
It must be mentioned that even a failure in innovation and recorded in a journal is invaluable, as that piece of information prevents other innovators from pursuing that line of thinking and work on fruitful ways. For example, If Edison had tried multiple elements and compounds before he arrived on Tungsten for filament in bulbs, and if that search had been undertaken by many groups, when one element failed, public knowledge of that failure would save the time of others. Therefore, in innovation it is not the success alone which should be exalted but the strenuous participation and commitment by those super skilled to discover those unknown. It is this which is missed by the Management and a Nobel prize cannot be given to every little incremental discovery, yet they have to be recognised both by the Management and among the peers.
At the labour level, wages would be a compensation which could be a measure in itself, but at the super skilled levels, mere wages do not reflect the intensity of the participation accurately.
This cartoon brings out that conflict, just as Labour Laws were made to protect the interest of the workers, in the coming years there need to be laws to protect the intense participatory amounts of Time expended on building products, designs etc., without which those Super-skilled personnel would be left like Dilbert making those sarcastic comments against the Management.