Fox TV's newest reality show sinks to a new level: forcing workers to fire each other for viewer entertainment.
Although increased employee control in the workplace is wonderful, the premise of the show is not. The point of “Does Someone Have to Go?” is that workers are to blame for all of the problems, all of the time.
From the Fox show description:
Almost every office across the country has some level of dysfunction, which often can be attributed to just a few select individuals – those co-workers who might be viewed as anything from lazy to incompetent to quite simply having a toxic personality that poisons the entire workplace. The difficult part for the employees is that, most of the time, the boss isn’t even aware of how bad the problem is, and the only person who can do anything about it IS the boss. That is, until now!
Remember, it’s not your management’s fault that work sucks, or the economy’s that sales may be dropping. It’s yours. A review from Time Magazine says:
In other words, if something’s wrong where you work, the problem isn’t management—God forbid—it’s you, or one of your shiftless coworkers. So go find a scapegoat! To help in that pursuit, the show prods sores by having employees badmouth each other in private interviews—which it then shares publicly—and revealing every participating worker’s salary. It’s the crabs-in-a-barrel philosophy of management: whip up ill will, stir up resentment, and then set the employees out to pull down people who have risen slightly higher from the bottom.
This isn’t the first time a TV show has gone hail-corporate (Undercover Boss, anyone?) But the particularly odious way FOX scripted this show – lower-wage workers beg co-workers for their jobs, as nepotism runs rampant in the office – shows how little respect the company has for working people.
In the real world, respect is one of the most important workplace requirements, more important than health benefits or work/life balance, yet 84% of people in the workplace report being put down at work in the last 5 years.
At the end of the day, these cage-matched employees deserve better – and so do you.