Labour mobility and a personal experience with it (2)

By Lena Lenknereit (1996), Christian Schmidt (1995), HPS Buxtehude, Germany

The central question that we are going to answer is why employees have to become mobile. This is, among other things, caused by crises like bankruptcies or changes concerning the labour market.

There are a few aspects that are included in the term “labour mobility”, e.g. moving to places offering better conditions. Nevertheless, it is important to differentiate between vertical and horizontal labour mobility.

The first describes being mobile within the company. As there always is the possibility to move up the career ladder, you eventually come to a spur-of-the-moment decision. As long as it concentrates on the career options within the company it is called vertical labour mobility since it is about the mobility inside the company.

In contrast to this, the latter is about moving from one company to another company. For this it is in any case necessary to have various qualifications.

People who use the horizontal labour mobility’s chances and possibilities are called labour nomads. It is striking that there are stable and unstable relations between the nomad and the boss or superior, at least when it comes to wages or issues regarding insurances. Nevertheless the status of a labour nomad becomes attractive for many adolescents since they are born into a world where a lot of people are dependent on social benefits. As the young do not want to have to cope with low wages at all they get interested in and accept the necessity of mobility.

In this case monopolies of skilled employees are built. This has its pros and cons. However, these monopolies shift into foreign countries and less attractive regions and countries have to feel the consequences. On the one hand, young talented students frequently get better chances abroad. On the other hand, Germany – for example – does not make it easy and attractive enough for foreign skilled workers to look for a job here. This is can have a negative impact on the economy and the development of the country in general.

Concentrating on the current subject in Germany, there already are a lot of persons depending on labour mobility. In the following a personal example:

In my case my dad had to leave Buxtehude for working in a little company in Rechlin 250 km away. So it was time to change our way of life, because my dad has to live in Roebel (close to Rechlin) for four and a half days and two and a half days – the weekend – in Buxtehude at home. This means a big change for the whole family. My dad’s duties have to be taken over by my sister, mum or myself and we had to make a new arrangement. It’s very hard for all of us but we are happy that my dad got a new chance and a new job so that we don’t have to live on the street and so that we can afford to buy, furthermore, the normal things for life.

And every Friday when my dad arrives at home, all are happy und glad about it

Because of this situation we decided to have a so called “family day” every Sunday. On this day we all do something together e.g. we go to a bowling center and play some games. So we can exchange the breaking news about school and work and feel as a united family. It’s every Sunday different and we love to laugh and do something together.

  Posted on 26.02.2013