Another point worth mentioning:
Minimum compensation LEADS TO minimum effort.
My first job was at a retail clothing store — the most profitable clothing retailer in the Southern U.S. This is a multi-billion dollar company.
I worked in the receiving bay. Most of my responsibilities required minimum skill. Unload a truck. Unpack the boxes. Strip the plastic off the clothes. Apply security sensors.
But there was one aspect of the job that required special training, and that was dealing with the shipping manifests. And the reason it required special training is because you had to use this 25 year old computer that only ran DOS. This was only six years ago, mind you.
Anyway. My first six months there, I bust my ass. Management doesn’t think I’m working hard enough because my workload is constantly piling up, but that’s because they had me, by myself, doing an amount of work that should have required at least two people, and probably three once the holiday rush started.
But eventually corporate does realize their receiving teams are too small. Instead of hiring just the two additional employees I needed, though, they hired five people. Which meant that the thirty hours a week I was getting are now slashed in half.
They also decided that with this many employees, the receiving team needed a manager. I was the obvious choice, but instead, they gave the job to a lady who has spent her entire career as a sales clerk in the shoe department. Didn’t know a damn thing about receiving.
I had to train this woman to be my manager. At which point, she becomes a full-time employee, 40 hours/week, benefits, etc. And my hours are cut from 30/week down to 15, sometimes 12.
That’s how I was rewarded for all my hard work for the better part of a year. So after that, I stopped busting my ass. I kept that job for another three years and became a master slacker, doing just barely enough to not get me fired.
Because why should I put in any more effort than that, if I’m not going to be rewarded for it?