What Came First, People or Business?

Each element of our society has essential value and deserves the respect of being sustainable. In this manner, each individual will contribute positively knowing they are a valued element of the whole. They will be more susceptible and able to contribute to the overall outcome, and their own perveyance.

People are the most valuable asset. Without people we have no need for products or services.

In a recent Forbes article by Laura Shin, “Why McDonald’s Employee Budget Has Everyone Up In Arms”, Shin points out that the budgeting tool became a detonator to the open acknowledgement that minimum wage does not support a person. It was right there on the internet!

Lilibeth Andre, Denzel, 10x8, watercolor

Lilibeth Andre, Denzel, 10×8, watercolor

This inability to make ends meet has been a long-known fact to anyone living on minimum wage or even without it. For example, one who has been in a position to know what it’s like to pay the bills with less money than is required can easily spot the fallacy of an attempt to support ones standard needs. In fact, the budgeting tool is clear to demonstrate that minimum wage doesn’t even support basic needs. And that is the whole point.

When we remove the ability people have to support themselves we take on a tremendous responsibility we are not well prepared to support. And when we bring someone on board requiring full-time (or more) attention from their life, we need to be able to give them what it takes to provide high quality attention.

What does high quality attention from an employee look like?

If I want to capture my employee’s high quality full attention, as a society, I want to be able to give him what he needs to be able to deliver that. Starting with the ability to have the peace of mind to be able to focus and providing the skills, knowledge and training that will allow him to maintain that optimum performance.

Lilibeth Andre, Drew, 11x8.5, watercolor

Lilibeth Andre, Drew, 11×8.5, watercolor

What provides peace of mind? Not having to worry about borrowing from Peter to pay Paul. This compromise is never more prevalent than for a working parent. In order to work, one must allow for care of the kids. Minimum wage does not provide the means to afford care for our children that merits their value as the investment in our future–yours and mine–because we don’t know what that child will be able to achieve and we want him to be the most balanced and prepared he can be. Does that include allowing the parent(s) to be more involved in their life? Does that mean providing the time they will need to do that? Does it mean that their work and school schedules will mirror each other? Does it mean valuing parenting years to raise the pay of one working parent?

The high quality comes in the education and training. An education system that provides ongoing knowledge and training to meet the needs of the workers and the employers. The guarantee that it will be affordable because we recognize the value of an education and its relationship to the quality of life of all of us. If we don’t invest in providing top education and training to our children, what will our future look like if those who become our leaders and service providers are less prepared that we were when we started? Will we be providing the enrichment that the arts offers to expand creativity and innovation as well as our appreciation for our own culture and that of others?

This minimum wage awareness focuses on those who work for others but what about those who work for themselves? Are we providing the liberties and environment that fosters sustainability by someone who sets out to support themselves or provide a product or service to others? We must not clip the wings of people or take away their independence. We must honor people’s essential value and deserved respect to be sustainable.

Ten Years On-line

I just finished uploading the new version of my website. It is a brand new design. I had been putting it off because of the enormity of the project. My website had become a record of my work, and as a friend pointed out, it collected the work I  had presented over the last ten years. That was an additional point that hadn’t sunk in.

A new look is what I was after. Something cleaner and crisper that featured my new work, the new place I am at with my work. I also wanted to reflect on the evolution of my work over the last ten years without losing what has taken me through this path to where I am.

To add to the challenge, I was using new software and hardware to manage the change. Need I say more?

Things got better when a pre-scheduled weekend workshop was suddenly cancelled and instead of lamenting the loss of the learning opportunity I quickly recognized I  had free time. I then asked myself what I could best do with this new-found time. The instant answer was to get the new website done!

So in characteristic focused manner, I dove right in expecting to not come up for air until I was done. I needed to resolve various technical hiccups that I had set aside for a rainy day and I acknowledged that now was the time to crunch and go deeper.

Let me tell you that pressing the “upload” button was suspenseful and to my satisfied surprise, all went smoothly. All thanks to the intense testing and troubleshooting to get to this exciting moment.

I hope you like the new look. Here’s to the next decade online.

My website is: www.lilibethandre.com

 

The Things I like

I like waking up to the sunlight shining through my window and reflecting shadows on the ceiling.

I like seeing the blooming crepe myrtles through my bathroom window.

I like the feel of dewy grass below my feet.

Spring Shore

Lilibeth André, Spring Shore, oil, 12×16

I like finding new blossoms in my garden.

I like the rhythm of my breath and my step as I jog down the street.

I like the way the perspiration collects on my cheekbones and my lip.

I like the feel of the breeze on my face as it blows through my hair.

I like the tired way I feel after exercise.

I like the colors in the sky as the sun begins to rise.

I like the sound of wind rustling through the trees in the woods, like the waves of the ocean lapping on the beach.

I like the feel of a warm summer rain as I splash on the pavement.

I like the feel of the music as a sway to its rhythm in the open space.

I like the feel of the crisp air on my skin when I hike in my shorts up a mountain on a winter day.

I like the taste of things that are sweet, salty, and sour.

I like the face of a child, of an elder, of you.

I like to hear the voice of a tenor.

I like to outline the figure with its nuance and dimension.

I like to see deeply and share that image through the work of my hand.

I like to believe.

I like the sound of water.

I like the sounds of the wind, strings and percussion.

I like the feel of clay in my hands and between my toes.

I like to see the sunset, the rising moon, and the stars.

I like the feel of exhaustion as I put my head on my pillow and drift off to sleep…

 

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    © Lilibeth André and Art by Lilibeth André, 2009-2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this text, images or content without express and written permission Lilibeth André is strictly prohibited. For permission to license, exhibit or purchase any of the artwork, email info@lilibethandre.com. Links to this site may be made with full and clear accreditation to Lilibeth André and Art by Lilibeth André.