Fake work is destroying Corporate America. Fake work is also destroying our school system. It then destroys Corporate America.
Fake Work (FW): A project or task that keeps one or multiple people busy yet has no productive value. It serves to keep an illusion alive that there is still something of productive value being achieved.
Where does this mentality come from?
It starts in the school systems that prep children for the fake work factories of the corporate world.
Take the same definition and insert the world “school” in between the words “Fake” and “Work”.
Fake School Work (FSW): A project or task that keeps one or multiple people busy yet has no productive value. It serves to keep an illusion alive that there is still something of productive value being achieved.
This usually is referred to as “busy work”. It’s completely accepted that there will be a large percentage of “busy work” assigned. Look at ratemyprofessors.com or ratemyteachers.com and search for “busy work”. You’ll see thousands of comments that contain the keyword “busy work”.
- “So much of this class is busy work.”
- “The busy work isn’t that bad.”
- “No midterm no final but a WHOLE LOT of busy work”
- “You learn nothing, just do busywork”
- “BUSY WORK, BUSY WORK, BUSY WORK!!! That’s all this class is. I seriously thought I was going to die of boredom”
- “The busy work isn’t that bad. Yes, weekly assignments are repetitive and a total waste of time, but they don’t take long.”
Fake work becomes so routine that it’s only natural for it to occur in the office. The universities are supposed to be preparing their students with skills and knowledge or the working world. Since fake work is so prevalent in corporate culture, it seems the universities are actually preparing students their students well. Students prepare for fake corporate work with countless hours of fake school work. This fundamental acceptance of fake work is a complacency that is eating away at society.
Fake school work is pervasive across the entire school system. These are tasks that provide no educational value and only serve to occupy time. Since the students are doing tasks and completing assignments, it appears they are doing work that fosters learning, though this is an illusion. It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly which assignments are fake and which tasks to categorize into fake school work. However, anyone who has gone through a formal education has experienced some form of fake school work. This could be any range of assignments that have no clear purpose or constructive value. A lot of times a teacher will use busy work as a tool to control the classroom. It’s also easier to assign busy work than to have an educationally stimulating and engaging environment. Homework is another medium through which fake work thrives. Homework should enhance understanding of concepts taught in class. Redundant worksheets and mindless assignments achieve nothing but occupying time. Homework should engage the student, and challenge the student to think critically.
Mindless work = busy work = fake work. This has to end.
This fake work problem starts during the most critical time in cognitive development and continues on through high school, college and into the working world. Instead of fostering innovation and creativity, the education system sets up students to await a set of instructions for certain tasks to be completed. The best educators are those that challenge their students to think. They foster creativity, and don’t smash it under the guise of reality. The most successful companies act the same way. They foster growth and innovation and look down upon automation and bureaucracy. Bureaucracy is something everyone agrees is bad, yet nobody does anything meaningful about it. They may appear to do something about it, but it’s still bureaucracy rearing its ugly head. A meeting is scheduled to form a panel to appoint a task force to assign a committee that has meetings in order to analyze some sort of process efficiency. Sound familiar?
Lifehacker.com recently did a poll about the pervasiveness of fake work.
At the time of this post, 84.45% of the respondents said they did fake work all, or some of the time!
This is a system wide corporate problem that began with a system wide one in the schools. It’s embarrassing how much fake work exists across so many levels of the academic, corporate, and government worlds. Watching “Office Space” is funny, but the concept of fake work is not a joke. It’s a serious mind numbing, profit destroying affliction. Stop being afraid of questioning whether or not something is fake work. The most successful employees actually are those that challenge the status quo in a constructive manner. There are dogmatic managers that will stop at nothing to uphold a legacy process in the name of tradition. This doesn’t mean you can’t try to delicately get them to change their tune. You might even be part of an entire cancerous fake group that does nothing but suck resources away and adds no value. If this is the case, you must feed your family and eat yourself. Though, you can be on the lookout for something more real and try and get out of the fake work cycle as quickly as possible. If your entire team was a fake fabrication, then it will be “difficult” to convince them of this. In either case, if too much fake work persists, people will notice, and eventually if necessary to the company’s survival, your position and group will be eliminated.
The fake work that started in schools took hold in Corporate America. Fake school work has destroyed countless young minds’ creativity and wasted countless hours on activities that add nothing to the learning experience. As fake school work destroys the school system, it destroys us in the process. And that’s the worst part. While fake school work may be easy, run from it for the hills. For it has caused irrevocable damage. However, we cannot dwell in the past. We must march forward to a future, fake work free!