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On my team at work, we have only a very few people who use their time productively. We all get paid for 8 hours of "work", every day, but most of my team would rather talk on their phone, hide from management, and underperform at their job. We also belong to a union, which makes it harder for management to fire the ones who don't work despite being informed about the situation.

I often find myself in the position of helping these people, or going in behind them and fixing their work. I am beginning to feel taken advantage of, and am getting fed up with most of my co-workers. Is it moral to continue helping people who do not take their own work seriously?

asked Dec 15 '11 at 04:51

Semiopathy's gravatar image


This was a great question, and I answered this question in today's Philosophy in Action webcast. You can listen to the audio segment here:


My basic view is that there’s no injustice or other moral problem with doing mission-critical work for your company, even if not your area, provided that you're honest and compensated fairly.

answered Jan 08 '12 at 14:32

Diana%20Hsieh's gravatar image

Diana Hsieh ♦

How about asking this question instead:

Are you being recognized by your manager for doing a FANTASTIC job? If so, do they have the authority and desire to reward you for it? If not (e.g., lack of justice, union restrictions) then the next question is, do you want to remain working at this company?

If they do recognize and reward you for your outstanding contribution to the company, then you are trading value for value and therefore are not "sacrificing" anything.

answered Dec 17 '11 at 00:35

Humbug's gravatar image


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Asked: Dec 15 '11 at 04:51

Seen: 1,371 times

Last updated: Jan 08 '12 at 14:32