Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Join a five-a-side team just to find work? Meritocracy really is on its last legs

an article in the Guardian by Peter Fleming

The suggestion from Italy’s employment minister that contacts are more useful than CVs, is a grim reminder of how little ability is valued in today’s labour market.

Workers from the City of London in a pub
‘Promotion and privileges are allocated subjectively, based on whether you have spent enough hours in the pub with the boss or trapped in a gym jogging next to the managing director.’ Photograph: Richard Saker for the Observer

Giuliano Poletti, Italy’s employment minister, touched a nerve when he recently suggested that young people bin their CVs and play five-a-side football instead. His point was that formal job applications don’t mean that much in a society where unemployment is rife. Landing decent work is more dependent on who you know, being able to mingle with the “right people” – or through what is called a “raccomandazione”: a recommendation by a friend or relative.

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