I maintain standards. In fact, two of them. I maintain “double standards”.

Scene 1 – Employee in office

The employee : “What ? Airconditioning in the office is down again? For as much as thirty minutes ?? It was down for as much as 45 minutes on one occasion only three months back. Who does the company think I am? I refuse to be taken for granted by the company. I refuse to do any work under these inhuman  conditions.”

The employee’s supervisor : “It is not such a big deal. They have assured me that it will be up and running in another 15 minutes. This is the first breakdown in over 3 months. It is a machine and requires occasional maintenance. Please get back to work now.”

The employee : “No way. You and other people in senior management are trying to fatten the margins by saving on electricity cost. But what about the conditions under which we have to work ? Have you ever thought about that ? Will you pay us for our sacrifice by sharing the better margins with us ?”

The employee then stomps out of the room, to return an hour after the AC has been restored. He claimed “nobody told him”.

Scene 2 – The employee returns home in the evening from a hard day at office

The employee’s 8 year old daughter : “Dad, it feels very hot now. When are we going to get an AC for our house ? It is difficult to do my homework in this heat.”

The employee : “You know darling how harmful ACs are for the environment. They produce fluorocarbons that damage the ozone layer. Besides, they are huge guzzlers of electricity which, again, the more we produce the more environmental damage we inflict. We are all making these little “adjustments” for the good of the environment. And, as you already know, working in a challenging environment  builds character. Now go and finish your homework.”

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