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TOEFL Essay #036: Should employers offer "jobs for life"?


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TOEFL Essay #036: Should employers offer "jobs for life"?

This essay was written by me (Erin Billy) and has 531 words. Even though this essay is relatively long, I wrote it in under 20 minutes. Your essay should have 300 - 500 words.

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Estimated TOEFL Essay score: 6.0/6.0

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There are many advantages and disadvantages to offering employees job security for life. In Japan, for example, prospective employees know that their employers will provide them with job security for their entire working days and they are better able to plan for their future and family. However, many businesses are now realizing that their employees have less motivation to work and this leads to less profits for the company. I will describe the advantages and disadvantages of this system in this essay and I will show that ultimately “jobs for life” is not good for a society.

Job security is very important for both the employee and the employer. For the employee, job security is important because she can depend on her source of income and better plan her future accordingly. For the employer, the employee represents an investment because of the number of hours of training required and the company will continue to have a return on this investment. As we all know, feeling secure about where our future income will come from is very important for our well-being—anybody who has lost a job and has had trouble finding a new one knows that this transition period can cause a lot of anxiety.

However, job security tends to lead to decreased productivity. In general, employees who are certain that they can never lose their jobs tend to work less efficiently, thereby contributing to an overall reduction of productivity in the company. A common example all over the world is that of civil servants. In Thailand, for example, many government workers are so indolent that it can take days or months for something to be finished that should only take a few days. It is not uncommon to walk into a government office and see employees filing their nails, making personal calls on the telephone, taking three-hour lunches, or surfing the Internet for fun.

Finally, the model of capitalism is proving to be the most efficient model that we have right now. This model of job security completely contradicts the foundations of capitalism. We can see in the United States now that people are starting to change jobs, even careers more and more often. Some career consultants even recommend that employees find new jobs every three to five years. Even in countries that still offer job security for life, this model is showing signs of dying out. For example, in Japan, once famous for its lifelong jobs, both employees and employers are starting to expect that these jobs will not last a lifetime. Many of my Japanese friends travel back and forth between the United States and Japan are have been able to find temporary professional jobs while they are in Japan.

In short, I disagree that companies should offer their employees jobs for life. We can see this example in some parts of the world and in other areas in the United States, but these examples are generally regarded as outmoded ways of conducting business. Finally, the models of capitalism, even though it may seem cruel, the so-called “law of the jungle,” are proving to be the most effective way to raise the standard of living of a country.




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