There is nothing more humiliating to a right-minded person than to be watched. There is nothing more annoying to an employer than the spectacle of men hard at work in his presence, but idle, or dilatory as soon as his back is turned.
A man who is desirous of earning his wages works at all times during business hours, but one whose chief anxiety is to draw his salary, is better out of the way than in it, and is, moreover, dishonest. Whether the engagement be for one year or one week, the agreement, on the one hand, is to pay a certain sum for the services of an individual; on the other, to work faithfully and honorably for the said term.
What would be thought of the employer who should, on pay-day, withhold a portion of the salary by reason of the contract not being kept by the workman? He would be universally condemned as mean beyond precedent; but is there any more justice or honor in frittering away an employer’s time, or deceiving him by a pretended performance of work, than withholding an employee’s salary? None at all.
Labor is honorable, and the man who works for his living, whether with a pen or a hammer and chisel, is to be respected, but no one respects a man who is constantly trying to evade his duty.
Source: Godeys Ladys Book, November 1866
Top Image: Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, v. 22, no. 552 (1866 Apr. 28), p. 89.
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