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Thread: What is the DEAL with no employees?

  1. #21
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    thanks Catherine. Does sound a lot like today. Loads of low paid workers in businesses that only survive on low paid workers. Sudden crisis that removes a lot from the pool (parents of kids, deceased, retired or otherwise no longer want part time work, got a new job or started a business, etc.) Better pay and quality of life benefits wanted by those remaining. The knights complaining that the serfs will no longer work for starvation wages.

    Results: Business like fast food will have to restructure their business model. Restaurants will have to be better run and many will cease to exist. New owner small! businesses may be created based on family and a small number of employees. Automation will be sped up, example self serve models.

  2. #22
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    I'm suspecting some jobs just won't be coming back.

    I recently was on a long road trip through the American Southwest. Many of the fast food places (esp. McDonalds) seemed to have completely revamped their operations to require very very few employees, and very little customer interaction. Service was swift and efficient, the places were clean, and they all looked closed even when open, since nobody was really there, compared to The Old Days.

    My eye doc is serving more patients than pre-pandemic, with fewer staff, and providing a higher quality of service, as recent events forced him to redesign his operations. I doubt he'll go back to The Old Way, and I wouldn't want him to. Of course, the people he laid off might feel differently. The dentist here has similarly improved his operation.

  3. #23
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    The pandemic might have accelerated the airport service model where iPads replace servers. Servers come by just to provide very basic human interaction. They don't take orders.

    But who know what this will lead to? I'd love to imagine that there would be more business owners like this one:
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
    www.silententry.wordpress.com

  4. #24
    Senior Member jp1's Avatar
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    Business models change. Until piggly wiggly came along grocery stores weren’t self serve. Before them a clerk collected your goods for you. And technology advances too. When was the last time any of us spoke to an operator to place a phone call. That used to be standard. Or told the elevator operator what floor we wanted. Or had someone else pump our gas (outside of Oregon and NJ)?

    In the past the workers who did those jobs found other jobs. Will that be the case now? Or will we ultimately need some sort of UBI? Or will we see a reduction in ‘normal’ work hours so that there are more of the remaining jobs to go around. My crystal ball is clouded with cataracts so I won’t begin to guess where things will be 10,25, 50 years from now. But I am willing to bet that the adoption of self checkout at grocery and other stores, the adoption of self order platforms at fast food places, etc will continue and possibly accelerate due to the current labor situation. And perhaps even the adoption of robots that can throw together a Big Mac. I imagine it would take far less workers at a McDonald’s if all they had to do was keep the bins of ingredients full and could leave the actual food prep to a machine. Which is yet another area that has a history of being technologized. Automatic shake machines were not always a thing. Someone used to have to scoop the ice cream, add chocolate syrup and milk and put it on a blender. Now someone just dumps a big bag of shake mix into the top of a machine and can then pour dozens of shakes just by pulling a handle for five seconds. But like automated phone systems most of us consider that technology ‘normal’ since it has been around for decades.

  5. #25
    Senior Member rosarugosa's Avatar
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    Catherine: I think you meant to insert a link?

  6. #26
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rosarugosa View Post
    Catherine: I think you meant to insert a link?
    The link works on my end! It's hyperlinked to "this one" in the sentence.

    But here it is again: https://scoop.upworthy.com/business-...YMBbIZzVPO-PSI
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
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  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by jp1 View Post
    Business models change. Until piggly wiggly came along grocery stores weren’t self serve. Before them a clerk collected your goods for you. And technology advances too. When was the last time any of us spoke to an operator to place a phone call. That used to be standard. Or told the elevator operator what floor we wanted. Or had someone else pump our gas (outside of Oregon and NJ)?

    In the past the workers who did those jobs found other jobs. Will that be the case now? Or will we ultimately need some sort of UBI? Or will we see a reduction in ‘normal’ work hours so that there are more of the remaining jobs to go around. My crystal ball is clouded with cataracts so I won’t begin to guess where things will be 10,25, 50 years from now. But I am willing to bet that the adoption of self checkout at grocery and other stores, the adoption of self order platforms at fast food places, etc will continue and possibly accelerate due to the current labor situation. And perhaps even the adoption of robots that can throw together a Big Mac. I imagine it would take far less workers at a McDonald’s if all they had to do was keep the bins of ingredients full and could leave the actual food prep to a machine. Which is yet another area that has a history of being technologized. Automatic shake machines were not always a thing. Someone used to have to scoop the ice cream, add chocolate syrup and milk and put it on a blender. Now someone just dumps a big bag of shake mix into the top of a machine and can then pour dozens of shakes just by pulling a handle for five seconds. But like automated phone systems most of us consider that technology ‘normal’ since it has been around for decades.
    Plus, if you complain about the service, the robots won’t spit in your food.

  8. #28
    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
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    As you scroll down you will see Dan Price’s story who did this 6 years ago with a much bigger company. The company has done very well and the employees all shared in it’s success.

  9. #29
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    My previous company was in the process of moving to a remote work model before the pandemic, and had already sold off several expensive buildings on its campus for ~$100 million. Then it learned so much about how to restructure its business that it recently sold off the remaining Silicon Valley campus, about 21 acres, for $365 million, and won't be returning to the previous model.



    It has moved the remaining headquarters operation into a lovely mixed-use development in downtown San Jose - residential, retail, restaurant, hotel, and the business:


  10. #30
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teacher Terry View Post
    As you scroll down you will see Dan Price’s story who did this 6 years ago with a much bigger company. The company has done very well and the employees all shared in it’s success.
    Thank you for reminding me! I knew about him but I had forgotten his name.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
    www.silententry.wordpress.com

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