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Friday, November 1, 2019

Unemployment in Tamil Cinema ~ Interview scene and banned Q on past employment salary !!

The Protagonist is an angry man – well-qualified, searches for jobs, gets frustrated on seeing ‘no vacancy’ boards, gets regret letters. In the interview when asked questions, would give angry reposte seeking how they are related to a job!.. but then how would the Employer evaluate prospective employee, check his credentials, capability, agility, understanding, language and communication skills and above all attitude !

.. .. How tough is  an interview ?  – Management experts would suggest tips on getting prepared, neatly dressed for the occasion, body language, learning current affairs and more .. .. remember in my interview for GIC Typists,  I was asked ‘Engel’s law’ – in cinema it would be :

Q :  where is Nicaragua ?   A:  I cannot see !
Q:What is the height of LIC ? A:none has invented a scale long enough  to measure it
Q : How many steps did you walk up the stairs to get into this room ?  A:  the same no. of steps that I would be walking down.
~ that way, the interview scene of Thillu Mullu, Rajni – Thengai Srinivasan was quite hilarious.

The Grapes of Wrath is a 1940 American drama film directed by John Ford. It was based on John Steinbeck's 1939 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name.  The film tells the story of the Joads, an Oklahoma family, who, after losing their farm during the Great Depression in the 1930s, become migrant workers and end up in California. The motion picture details their arduous journey across the United States as they travel to California in search of work and opportunities for the family members. The film is widely considered to be one of the greatest American films of all time. In 1989, it was one of the first 25 films to be selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."

In modern World, just as it is difficult getting good job, most Companies do struggle in recruiting candidates, with high attrition rate bane of every industry.  The typical interview would wind with Qs like :  - Tell something about yourself; what is your amibition ?; if selected, when can you join and how long would you stay ? ; why did you leave your previous employment; what was your previous CTC ? – and what is your salary expectation ? – routine, innocuous Qs one may think !

Much water has flown under the bridge – when we grew up in late 1970s, unemployment was the theme of many a movies.  For the 1980 Deepavali, two movies were to hit the screen – one by Balachander and other by Barathiraja – a friend of mine quipped that on the eve, Braja telephoned anxiously stating that both had filmed on the same subject and their films were to get released on the same occasion – Deepavali.  He went on describing that Balachandr responded stating that their styles were different and hence there would be no problem !!

Varumaiyin Niram Sivappu starring Sridevi & Kamal, directed by Balanchader   was simultaneously shot in Telugu as Aakali Rajyam, released later. In Hindi it was Zara Si Zindagi – it sought to portray the  struggles of youth and their disillusionment.  Kamal, Dilip and S Ve Shekher would reside in a room in the Capital of the Nation [there was a song with such a negative overtone too !]   Nizhalgal, starring Ravi, Chandrasekar catapulted into fame with great songs of maestro Illayaraja.  The film revolved around a group of youngsters and their struggles to overcome the challenges faced by them in society. Though a commercial failure, the film was screened at the "Indian Panorama" section of the International Film Festival of India in 1981.

.. .. away read this interesting article in NY Times titled ‘ where women rule the headlines’ written by  Kristin Wong,  author of “Get Money: Live the Life You Want, Not Just the Life You Can Afford.” This would seek to redefine the interview though the place, law and attitude could be far different than what we experience here !! (some excerpts)

“Employers should be hiring and paying potential employees for the experience and qualifications they have.” — New Jersey Senator Loretta Weinberg, discussing a recently passed wage equity law that bans employers in her state from asking prospective employees about their salary history. 

“How much did you make in your last job?”
When an employer asked me this question during a job interview early in my career, I paused. I didn’t want to lie, but my last job barely paid above minimum wage, and I was hoping to earn much more than that in a new position.
Why did my past income even matter? I thought.
Still, I told the truth. When I received a lower offer than I expected, I wondered whether I should have been so honest.
Now asking job seekers about their salary history during employment interviews is quickly becoming a thing of the past.

Massachusetts became the first state to ban employers from posing this question to job candidates back in 2016. Since then, 17 other states and as many local jurisdictions have passed versions of the ban, including New Jersey, whose law will go into effect in January; Illinois, which took effect last month; and Kansas City, Mo., where a ban will go into effect next week. The new laws are designed to protect job seekers — like former me — from receiving starting salaries that are tied to low past salaries. This is mostly aimed at women, and many of the bills directly address equal pay and the gender wage gap. The idea is that if a woman is paid less from the get-go, and then limited by her past salary at each subsequent job, it may be impossible for her to catch up.

 “This bill provides a means of narrowing the wage gap by making it less likely for employers to unintentionally perpetuate the gap by basing salary offers for new hires on their previous salary,” New Jersey Assembly woman Joann Downey said of her state’s bill, which she sponsored. She added that the practice had a disproportionate effect on women. Some states have passed bans that won’t go into effect until 2020 or later. For example, Colorado signed the Equal Pay for Equal Work Act into law earlier this year, but it won’t take effect until Jan. 1, 2021. The new laws may prove difficult to enforce. Even if they’re not permitted to, hiring managers might ask you about your past salary anyway. If this happens, negotiation experts recommend diplomatically deflecting the question with a response like, “My desired salary is more in line with market research and the details of what this current job entails,” or “I’d be happy to talk more about salary once an offer is in place.” !

If you remember the question posed to me .. .. .. Engel's law is an observation in economics stating that as income rises, the proportion of income spent on food falls, even if absolute expenditure on food rises.  The law was named after the statistician Ernst Engel (1821–1896).  Engel's law does not imply that food spending remains unchanged as income increases: It suggests that consumers increase their expenditures for food products in percentage terms less than their increases in income.

Interesting !

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
23rd Oct 2019.

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