Essay on Office Space Management

1427 Words Jun 3rd, 2014 6 Pages
Office Space: Report, Group 35
1.) With reference to specific examples from the film, critically reflect on how Office Space illustrates tensions in the wage and effort bargain between management and workers.
The purpose of this question is to illustrate tensions in the wage and effort bargain between management and workers, more specifically, the wage and effort bargain issues that arise in the film Office Space. Throughout this essay we will discuss the theory behind the wage effort bargain and assess how the balance of power between the workers and managers affects the performance in the work place. We will begin with looking at the history behind the wage and effort bargain. We will also look at how the motivation of employees is
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This results in the workers increasing productivity for little or no increase in their wage.

This wage and effort bargain arises as workers want to achieve an increase in their standard of living through the maximisation of their wages. However, these wages represent a cost to the capitalist firm. Increasing labour wages will cause the firms cost to increase and cause their profits to be squeezed. Thus, what will be seen as a gain for workers in terms of higher wages will be seen as a loss for employers in terms of lower profits. This can be seen as de-motivating to the worker and could result in a decrease of productivity, as the employee is only prepared to produce the effort that they believe is worth the wage they receive. Therefore motivation is a very important part of the wage and effort bargain as one of the main motivates at work for deskilled workers is money. This aspect is examined in Office space as Peter says how he would do absolutely nothing if he had 1 million dollars. This shows that he does not want to put the effort in at work, and would rather do nothing, meaning that when he is in work, he will do as little as possible. Another example of a lack of motivation in Office Space is when Peter is trying to avoid Lumbergh so that he will not be asked to work weekends. This means that he is not willing to put in extra effort and would rather do the minimum amount of work that is…