I have been pondering over this question for a long time but in vain.
We have the best looking steel-and-glass offices, best salaries, best comforts… the list goes on. A look at the IT offices is in itself a pleasure. Nice(sometimes weird) design, architectural wonders and innovative structures. From the inside, the story gets even better. Air conditioners, comfortable seats to sit on, lovely lightings around the cubicle, free snacks, free coffee and tea and boost:), clean drinking water, dust free environment, educated professionals around… the list goes on again. So, what do we crib about??? The single most definitive answer I have come across- “long working hours”.
How to quantify “long”??? How long should “long” be to be called as “long”??? 10 hours, 12 hours, 14 hours… how much. The answer is subjective. Lets consider for the sake of argument that on an average 10 working hours per day is considered to be long. Name a profession and average out the working hours. Small shop owner: 9am to 9pm. Porter: 6am to 10pm. General physician: 10am to 8pm. Surgeon: 10am to 7pm (without considering the midnight calls in case of emergencies). A surgeon is also under immense pressure as lives are at stake. There is no room for error. What are the perks these guys get??? What are the average salaries of these people??? You work it out. How many of these people crib??? Every profession needs long working hours. A surgeon might receive extra perks and higher salaries but his profession demands that. He cannot commit even a single mistake. (unlike us who can just re-compile the code again and again and again!!!) They might crib about their plight; but why is it not coming up in the media??? Why are the news channels and paper media concerned about the IT people and not the other crowd??? Why do they focus only on us??? Why??? I dont have an answer. We have been spoilt with all the attention that we get.
Coming to number of days of work per week. We “officially” have to work 5 days a week. In other professions, the official number of days of work is 6 or 7 (or 5 for that matter). We can take holidays at will. We can make excuses at will. If we consider a daily-wage labourer, can he take holidays??? Yes he can, but he wont get paid for that day. If his family is dependent on him, u think about it; rain or pain he has to work to meet his daily needs. Is he not under pressure??? Infact he is under pressure than most of the professions. I dont even want to talk about his perks and working conditions. You know it better than I do.
So what differentiates our pressure with their pressure??? Many say that while theirs is physical, ours is mental pressure. Valid point should I say. Who is not under mental stress??? Infact our profession is mental stress alone while most other professions demand both. But, does it require so many perks and luxuries??? Does it justify us cribbing??? Can we even crib??? I. DONT. THINK. SO.