I have not written any post recently (4 months since my breakup post). I want to use this article to discuss some of the ideas i have about “work”, and by work i mean professional work. I won’t be citing anything (at least for now since i’m using this post to get away from working so yeah), so take everything here with a hugge grain of salt.
Corona has changed a lot and many of big software companies have moved to a permanent remote work setup. That actually makes sense as software can be done remotely and for that we have really built awesome infrastrucutre supporting this: from email, to Slack and Zoom. Everything we do in software is inherently remote-friendly.
9 - 5
Work has become a lifestyle and a fundamental part of our daily routine. 9 - 5 is extremely arbitrary; it has nothing to do with peak performance time nor backed by any efficiency measure. It is no surprise that peak performance times varies from someone to other. But, regardless, we have be somewhere between 9 - 5; it would be weird to stay at home at such.
But again, what work really is?
What if i don’t want to work.
You need to work, because:
- you need to pay your bills and the necessary expenses
- you have to build a career
- your career can support you when you finally retire
There is a theme there. All of these listed items are basic human needs. You are not asking anything more than food and a place to live under!
So why bother, why should i work?
Universal Basic Income
Basic income, also called universal basic income (UBI), citizen’s income, citizen’s basic income, basic income guarantee, basic living stipend, guaranteed annual income, or universal demogrant, is a theoretical governmental public program for a periodic payment delivered to all citizens of a given population without a means test or work requirement.1
Universal basic income seems to be too good to be true. It is really a big investment to endeavor and lots of countries like Sudan might not be able to actually to implement it. For example, we don’t have sufficient cash to secure our energy needs. Being also a state-based inititative, that also puts us into the usual socialism trap: states are run by business man and multi-national corporates, it is just too hard to fight them all. However the theory sounds, when you cannot implement it when you cannot materialize it, it becomes just a “good theory” and that really sucks.
There are other types of share-based companies that can help with that and it proven to be successfull like Co-Ops and cooperation movement in general 2. Co-Ops gives nice incentives for employees since they are all shareholders; one down side is that not all employees are equal and not all efforts are the same. That makes it work extremely well in places where labors have ~ equally the same responsibilites (e.g., agro coops, and in Sudan Arabic Gum Coops and other similar coops). It is important to note that intensive labor ideas really works well back then when a labor is giving it all to the business owner. I can hardly imagine the same scenario being in software business.
Shargii: how we do our business
In Shargii, we really have this undefined work. The bottom line is we cannot afford to pay our employees their salaries, so what we do instead is giving them revenue share. Revenue share is particularly useful in that it is fair for employees and also beneficial to the company.
Revenue share has its own problems as well. Not everyone can actually be able to wait until a product is monetized. And this might not be their responsibilities too.