Corporate America sucks

This post is about why corporate American sucks. I love my life and my work and my family, so I am not some bitter guy, on the contrary. I am an unrepentant capitalist.  However, there is no way you are going to tell me that corporate America does not suck.

Corporate America sucks

Why does corporate American suck? This is what you will most likely find:

You will be surrounded by jerks. People in corporate America are seeking a lifestyle (bonuses) rather than creating something of real value.  If they could create something of real value they would.  But the reality is they can not for lack of courage or brains.  Hence, you find greed and arrogance ruling the kingdom of corporate America, and the honest hard working guys gets knocked around like a corporate pawn. You are a corporate serf who can fly beneath the radar, if you are lucky. However, more likely you are a corporate foot soldier who will get medals or sacrificed when needed.

If you look at the people who succeeded in the corporate world – they are losers themselves in life. The reality is they do not have the brains to function in the real world.  They get paid entrepreneurial wages, yet lack creativity and vision.  Usually they are lifers in the company and have moved up after fifteen years of service. Being a Director or higher means they have essentially abandon their families for their work and want you to also. Sorry if this sounds harsh, but it is true. Everyone needs to work, but most high fliers pay the price with their families.

Why would any wife want to send her husband to corporate America? I personally know scores of office romances. Is it worth the price?

The start of your corporate service

At the start of working for one of these great companies, you will be working 13 hours a day, doing really boring tasks, mostly in excel.  You will be proud that you have become an excel power user and the local office guru will even know some Microsoft Access or database query tool.   Needless to say what you will be doing will be incredibly boring.    Was this your dream? When you were a child did you dream of becoming a corporate excel power user foot solders?

You will become as grey and boring as your sterile workplace

You move up corporate America – Your morals will be compromised

You personal morals will start to be tested. You will be asked to get more out of your ‘team’ than is reasonable.  People will sacrifice their God given time on this earth to work for the ‘team’ on a project that will include nights and weekends.  If you are in a billable position you will have more pressure to bill clients more and more for less and less work, otherwise the partners or directors will not move you to their level. The main thing is people will spend more time with their ‘corporate family’ (its ridiculous when company’s refer to themselves as ‘family’, its pure manipulation) than their real family.

Directors and Managing Directors will interject swears and strong language at times to motivate people and carry on dramatically to get people to do more. The language and the rude way they carry on is unprofessional, but overlooked because everyone needs to get paid.

There is a lot of dishonesty in corporate America. If you are in any position of management you know what I mean, or just read the headlines.

Corporate America sucks

A Corporate warrior’s life  just stinks, is unhealthy and your kids suffer

Office work and your health – People who work for corporate America have a higher rate of depression, divorce, affairs, drinking, gambling, betrayal of friends and trust, etc.  Office workers are fat always waiting for the next sugar rush to relieve their boredom. The look forward to that office birthday party or Friday morning doughnut club or coffee run. You will gain weight and not lose it unless you quite your desk job. Sitting is the worst thing you can do for your health. Your friends who work in the service sector will live longer and be healthier than you.  I have read, that sitting is as bad a smoking. Why destroy your health, for a few more material things like an upgraded cell plan?

Kids of business men and women are often messed up – Corporate warriors do not see their kids. They are all saying they are saving for their children’s education. However, I would rather spend time with my kids from 0 to 15 when their IQ and social skills are developed, rather than send them off to some famous university. In a word life in corporate America sucks. Is it not better to teach them chess or a language when they are young, than work extra at the office?  My theory is, dispite the drawings and photos, careerist  do not care about their kids.  If they did they would not spend so much time at the office. Maybe if you work for a few years intense, but if you work ten or more years intensely ‘for your family’ it is a lie. Be honest, if you cared you would spend time with them. I read and know personally too many children of families that are spending their time in Corporate America, and they are not raised optimally to say the least. Many are messed up. In contrast I do not know too many countryside or Amish children with issues.

Corporate America sucks because it will make you a worst kind of person

I could go on here, but I below I started a list of  ABCs. I wanted to do the whole alphabet, but I invite you to add your own comments for additional letters of the alphabet.

  • Arrogance –  People making your feel like they know more than and that you are screwed up. This tactic is especially common with people who are insecure about their own IQ.
  • Belligerence – aggressiveness psychological warfare between people which management sometimes even encourages as a way to see who is better for the job. The most primitive people win.
  • Control – this includes impatience, pettiness, micro managing your life, with the goal of personal glory from the fruit of your hard work.
  • Dumb – working around people who think they know, will make you start feeling the same and therefore close your mind to new ideas.
  • Envy, ego and exaggeration in corporate America.

What are the alternatives to corporate America?

There are many, the US was founded on rugged individualism. There are an infinitive number of ways to live outside or limit yourself to the toxic exposure of corporate America.  From homesteading to being an entrepreneur, to working with your family in a productive endeavour at home.  Develop a skill people really need that will give you the flexibility you need to spend more time with your family.  You do not have to believe in a Jeffersonian America to think out of the box, to make a living. I recommend you start exploring the alternatives, as this will not only make for a better society, but also make you a better person.   Even if you do, choose to stay in corporate America, try not to sacrifice your family time, health and morals for your stupid boss.

55 Replies to “Corporate America sucks”

  1. Hill Hill says:

    The worst thing is when you work on a team, yet everyone is just in it for themselves. Or when management breathes down your back for every little thing and gets all stressed out instead of remaining cool and calm and dealing with it like an adult. Or how about when they raise the healthcare premiums, yet supply Krispy Kreams 3 times a week? And you can get laid off or sued for any little thing now. All the jobs are through temp agencies to save corporate costs and give the employee less and less. Yep, it sucks!

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      Very exact comment about why corporate America sucks. It is very hard to be plugged into the Matrix of corporate America if you have a soul. I would do it again if I had to, but only if I had to.

      1. Mark Biernat says:

        All this creativity and productivity lost because people are too busy playing the company game. Therefore, the ones that rise to the top are often but not always those well versed at the game rather than proficient at their job.

    2. I own an accounting firm and know how hard it is to just find someone who knows the freaking alphabet and can place files in alphabetical order. If you people would stop bitching about your employers and start focusing on doing a good job you might actually enjoy your jobs because you would feel accomplished, you would stop spelling things incorrectly in threads like these, and you would know that it costs far more to hire someone through a temp agency than it does to hire them straight up. You need to understand a little bit of the other side of the coin here before you start up these ridiculous bitch sessions. I have yet to find one good employee who is actually worth what he thinks he is worth, who is actually productive enough to pay for the wage I am paying him, and who doesn’t sit around wasting time on the internet bitching about how hard his job is, how the politics are so awful and how he wished he had another job.

      1. Arjun Prakash says:

        Good for you that you own an accounting firm if it is real. But the way you comment is not the language of the company owner but a “brainwashed” employee who think that working 9 to 5 is the only way to survive. If I was wrong, then obviously you want to hire a reproductive employee who have a mindset of a typical employee because he or she would be close minded to see the other side of the world and work,work,work and provide value to the workplace, which only make the top guy filling their bank account. And you know that. There are great alternatives to corporate America, but people are brainwashed into thinking that working a nine to five is the only way. But the truth of the matter is, nobody likes to work 40 hrs a week just to earn a paycheck, this will only make the “top guy” AKA the owner of the company richer and richer. The main point of your comment is only to say that working the 9 to 5 is the way of life which is horse&*^%. Once again, congratulation on escaping the corporate America by owning an accounting firm (If you really own the firm caus the way you wrote the comment indicates that you are nothing but a brainwashed employee) Sorry it offend you, but it will definitely offend the top guy.

      2. Lots of people are poorly trained, but it’s not their fault. America used to educate everyone well, but not anymore. You can thank Corporate America for that.

        America is going down the hill.

      3. Corporate Worrier who quit says:

        I have came to realize that corporations do not care about turnover or the cost of replacing an employee. The focus is fear. Corporations use fear as a tactic to submit employees into corporate slavery. Yes, they can quit. We all can quit. That is not a logical option in many cases. It is comparable to a slave working in the cotton field and deciding to run. Sure they might get away but sooner or later what benefit do they game financially. Is it better to take the bullet when fleeing or drown slowly in finical ruin and die? That is the option most of us have at hand. I disagree with fleeing being a full heartily, non-uncomplicated answer but I had no choice. Corporate America began to affect my life. I gained weight and depression settled in. I believe without a shadow of a doubt that if I continued to work for the same company for another 3-4 years I would have died of a heart attack or panic attack (which I had while working and on the job). It is far easier to judge a position that you have not experienced than to experience yourself and keep the same position. And to judge someone on the edict of or spelling presented without acknowledging the content or form of the statements is childish and arrogant. If you have to exercise your mind to understand someone then do it. I purposefully left a word misspelled to see if you cringe. You are not focused on the content if you are still fixated on the that word when you finish this whole paragraph. Figure it out. I know they teach how to spell in school but don’t they also teach how to use context clues and acceptance?

      4. I want to respond to your comment. I am a woman of color who doesn’t even get on the playing field because of a small minded mentality. I have a Masters of Education and an MBA in Finance. I called an employer for an job that was posted, the human resources person said, “Why don’t I go to Florida where I belong since my name is Monteiro.” I was furious, so now I will work for myself because I did everything I was supposed to do, but instead I’m berated and insulted for a name that I’m proud of which bears my father’s lineage.
        Corporate America needs a wake up call, do you know that the demographics of America have changed and also most of the decisions are made by women as far as purchasing power. I have tried to apply and play by the rules, but now I see I have to make my own rules in order to be happy.

        1. Mark Biernat says:

          The main idea is there are people who judge on less professional criteria, but the market will pay when it needs a person with specific skills. Try to focus on the positive and when people make less than professional evaluations, be thick skinned. I am sensitive and people have judged me my whole life on my looks and it was painful. I was too skinny and picked on and judged in the workplace for that. But I developed expertise that know one cared after a while. I did fill out but my geek look intially impeded my ability to be taken seriously intially.

          My best business advice is stand tall, dress well and be calm clear and sophisticated in speaking and this will win people over. I am not a fan of Obama’s policies but the man has perfected a calm, clear and well dressed demeanor. Every perceived negative sign can be turned into the plus sign that it is.

          Yes corporate America is filled with jeasous petty people but you need to raise above it and find the majority of good people sitting in the cubes.

          1. Mark, thank you for your advice. I’ve decided to work for myself and change the playing field because the institution of corporate America does not care about people. The company I will build will offer daycare on the premises, give women and men unlimited maternity leave and four weeks vacation to start. It is a deeper issue of inequality. The institution of corporate America is the paradox of equality.

      5. Yes TR, I concur on many points. One point being; I have read many such articles on the web, and have found few that are legible. I believe it may be due to the fact so many have grown up texting, and use so much abbreviated diction in those texts, that as a nation we are losing the ability to apply the English language correctly. The inability to use the proper words in their proper meaning, the lack of proper use of pronouns etc. I simply find troubling. Besides your own reply, there are none at this site that are written above a fourth grade competency for grammar, or spelling. If it weren’t for spell check, I doubt that even the NYT would be legible today.
        Another point that comes to mind is, the work ethic that is sorely lacking in the youth of America. When one comes out of college and enters the work world, they should realize that they are in competition with every employee on earth, as is the company they work for. If you want to go far in your career, yes you will have to suck ass for a good many years, and yes, you will have to work around the clock for a good many years until you get to move into higher positions. Then, you will get replaced by a younger college graduate with a more advanced degree, at which time you will get to start the process all over again. Unless, you have saved enough of the money you made, and learned enough of the business you were in, to go out on your own -taking from that company all the good talent with you- to start your own company. Because that’s just how it works. So, while you are a fledgling new corporate drone, throw yourself into that dull boring job, stay after, to learn how each part works together, taking notes on what works and what doesn’t, where a new niche, process, or business need could lay the grounds for a new business venture. Then when the time comes, where you have the funds, or know how to get the funds, go out and do it. And, as I said before steal that company’s best talent with you when you do go. That is always the best revenge.
        However, the problem with that model is, that not all of us are born healthy or disease free, and, it is a terrible model for the raising of children. And I expect it is one of the primary driving factors to the low birth rate for certain portions of our society, the responsible type portions.

      6. We will not do as good a job as if we owned the business, because that is capitalism. You get compensated for work but not ownership. Therefore if the compesation is now above average my work will not be above average. I will not sacrifice my happiness for yours.

      7. George Hauser says:

        It’s extremely easy to find good cheap help in the global economy with illegal immigration, H1B visas, the internet and global staffing firms. You can easily fire any worker in America and replace them with almost anyone from a third world country willing to work for poverty or near poverty wages these days. This isn’t the 1980’s you ass clown! Employers have more and better options than ever before because of globalization and the internet. You can always and easily find great employees for rock bottom wages these days and don’t tell me otherwise.

      8. Reallygiant says:

        Typical corporate-think. Blame the poorly-trained workers while neglecting any responsibility for your workers’ capabilities, which conveniently releases your stupid corporate behinds from coughing up some green to help your workers advance within their career fields. This is not the approach, corporate cowards.

    3. gary ockunzzi says:

      You’re right. Teams are just another ‘bullshit veneer.’ The people that initiate them are hiding behind pseudo-benevolence or “good guy” “good gal” images, while selfishly promoting their own self and best interests (and, if you should cross them or frustrate them, I think they’d have no problem throwing you underneath the bus or undermining you). The whole game sucks. It’s one upmanship, dog-eat-dog.

      1. Mark Biernat says:

        Working in the battlefield of the USA corporate landscape is to make money, full stop. I find it puzzling people proclaim that they are careerists and put their family in the backseat or on even par with work; as manifest by quality time spent to their careers unless it was for anything other than taking care of their family. Corporate America sticks.

        A big exception to all this is the company I am consulting at now. It is perhaps the best I have ever worked for. I do not know why but right now I feel pretty thankful I working with such a good group of people. Yet this is an exception and not the rule.

        1. gary ockunzzi says:

          Glad to hear that. Most people that I know that work in Corporate America are pretty unhappy and stressed out. My youngest daughter works for a major law firm, she thought that she had grabbed the brass ring when she began with the firm….great benefits, 3 weeks vacation, etc. Except she now complains that she has no life and I can see in her countenance that she’s unhappy and stressed. Fortunately she’s young enough and well educated and can still make a change. I got stuck in it….wife, kids, family, big house and had to ride it out the best that I could. Again, it was good to hear that you’re in a situation that you are happy with, well treated, and seem to have a life.

  2. I am just about to turn down a management position with my company. I just lost a very close and good friend, He was my Boss. He gave his life for this piece of sh_t company dealing with issues from employees that the Human resources department hired! What a waste of effort and time, Human resources, These are people who can’t do any thing else in life, They are unskilled people. They hire the people based on what they have on a piece of paper and 15 minutes of face time! Anybody can be Superman in that frame of time! I work with people with degrees and certificates from high-end Colleges, and they can not poor p_ss out of boot. Also, It truly amazes me at the amount of politics that you have to do just to feel as if you are part of the “family”. I have been with this company for 17 years, and I can’t stomach half the people I work with. I will lose my place in this “family”, but I don’t give a shit. It’s not a family I want to be in. I have a real Family, and I was looking when i found this job. Thank you for letting me vent..

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      Sean thank you very much about your comments on corporate American sucks. I know people personally who have given their lives for the ‘corporate family’ and made sacrifices with their real family only to be fired. I know people who have died young, largely from too much work stress. Great comment.

  3. Yes, and yes. A thousand times yes. I used to work for corporate. It was a nightmare. I felt like I had forfeited my soul . . . and not even for a decent wage!

    I was shuffled from department to department to department under their “cross-training” bull, which is just that, bull. When I said I was tired of moving, they wrote me up; then got mad at me because I refused to sign it.

    So pretty much my responsibilities increased, but never my authority. I was promised over and over that I had so much “potential”. Well, potential shemential. I’d had enough of that nonsense.

    I resigned a few months later. I don’t regret it, and hope I don’t ever have to work in corporate again.

  4. Corporate climate is not that bad if you consciously join a growing startup at the age of 20, get some stocks which you sell at the age of 25 and then you are a free man and can start thinking about establishing a family.

    But when you already have a family, it’s a completely different story. I had a journey with a tech startup from Tel Aviv and I was one of two men there having a wife and a child. And it just wasn’t a place for a family guy.

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      I believe if you are going to join a start up, let it be yours. I have had a few offers to join reasonable start ups. I would rather do my own thing on my own terms with my own creativity.
      However, I would say working for a small company is much better than working for a large. Working for a small company anything is possible. In a large company many people are just hanging out and trying to fly under the Radar and keep their job.

  5. Rico Vandoren says:

    Frustration – you’ll have a lot but don’t ever express it unless it is over a “low performer’s” lack of conviction to the company’s mission

    Gullibility – Mutually exclusive objectives, departments working at cross-purposes and policy u-turns that all must be accepted as necessary to meet “business needs.”

    Homogeneity – everyone should be able to complete the same task with the same competency in the same amount of time yet, contribute “fresh thoughts” when asked that differ from those offered by “peers.”

    Interrogations – You will be asked why you made a mistake rather than informed that you made one. If you are reporting an error or problem, be prepared to be asked why you didn’t gather 3 to 5 pieces of information that are well beyond the purview of your position.

    Jargon – incorporate words, phrases and slogans that are completely divorced from their linguistic meaning so as to mean nearly the opposite in their corporate setting.

    Anyone else?

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      Rico brilliant. This is corporate America.

  6. Sickofmiddlemanagement says:

    I love how they continuously pile unrelated tasks to your daily duties which just get in the way of what really matters. Then, when it’s unrelated they’ll just ‘re-write’ your job description to encompass any damned thing they’d like. Don’t think you’ll be getting compensated for your hard work and dedication either, nope, that’ll wind up in some bean counters bonus pool. I dislike working for these people. I feel like I’ve died and went to corporate hell prison.

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      The worst thing about being a corportate slave is you will never get that time back. That is why I unplugged from the matrix. Money comes and goes but time only goes.

  7. It’s not to say that working in corporate America does not suck but this is the part I don’t like, everyone has a choice and most corporate monkeys don’t understand that they chose their lot in life so why are they bringing their envy, complaints, arrogance, micro-managing, backstabbing behavior to work? They could have more than freely chosen to work in a mom& pop hardware store instead of joining a corporation. It was a rhetorical question because like all college grads, I fell into the lure of monetary rewards vs all other psychic benefits. There are still some good people left in the corporate world who need the money, enjoy the work, still have their souls in tact, and maybe vie for more and hopefully will leave the corporate world at some point and start their own businesses but for the rest of the undeserving lot… i think it’s a disgrace to the great men (Rockerfeller, JP Morgan, Vanderbilt) who created these industries. I would never go back to work in a corporation only for the sheer fact, 1) I have the means not to currently and 2) I am a capitalist and need to be around those who strive for greatness on their own terms. As per Ayn Rand, the world is only made up of two groups of people… those who create and those who loot. The majority are looters who can be found working across most of corporate America.

  8. Telisha M.L. says:

    Hi Mark, I’ve discovered your site last night. Out of curiosity, I googled why people refused to work for corporate America or at least hated it. I’m a recent college graduate with a math degree and sometimes I felt that I wasn’t good enough because I didn’t work for a Fortune 500 company unlike some of my peers and made pretty good salaries.

    Because of my degree many assumed that I should have been employed already or at least found a job by now. I don’t want to be a teacher anymore even though I was a teaching intern in high school and while in college I didn’t want that career anymore. I don’t want to be an accountant or an actuary even though these careers would be considered “number crunching” careers. It is often annoying once people learned about my degree they assumed that I wanted to teach and my response is, no.

    What lead me to this site is I googled the question “Why corporate sucks”, read other posts from this site, and I was motivated and relieved to know that there’s more to life than just making good salaries, having great stock option plans, and should not have to give up nights and weekends just to climb the corporate letter. Family and time is much more important.

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      I live on an Island off the coast of Florida by the beach in a luxury condo with my family 24/7. I spend maybe 1,300 dollars a month on all our expenses total (I make more). How am I poor? You have to really look at lifestyle. Nothing can replace that. It is a money vs. Lifestyle thing. I also lived in Eastern Europe a good part of my life where poor is really poor, so I think I have an appreciation for living well on a budget.

      My friend who has a lawn care service in Palm Coast has a 3,000 square foot home with a pool, cutting grass for rich people. He was an Investment Banker living in NYC in Queens in a small place with his family. How can you equate those to lives. He is much happier now.
      I believe if you are patient, and I mean to not count you life in months but years, the answer will reveal itself to you. You might have ups and downs but eventually you will find a way to make money that does not require you sacrificing your life.
      Most people drift in their 20s and I recommend you not worry about this. Just continue to develop your mind and spirit and ask God to guide you and the answer will eventually reveal itself.

      I would start with the idea of what you really loved to as a kid and see if there is something there. The best thing to start with is read and research as much as you can online and dream a bit. Explore what others are doing. Maybe you are more of an entrepreneur?

      1. Telisha M.L. says:

        Thank you so much for putting the idea of money versus lifestyle into a perspective. Living well on a budget, nice. I’m glad that investment banker is happy cutting grass for rich people. I never saw it this way. Most of my life consisted of interest in academics and something that requires thinking. I fell in love with Pre-Algebra in the 7th grade and during my sophomore year in high school my love for math grew deeper. Before I fell in love with math, my interest was in Geography; learning the capitols, landforms was fun. My hobbies as a child was puzzles, color in coloring books, and connecting the dots. I liked puzzles because I have to put pieces to together. As a teen, I started to scrambling words and loved the game called hangman.

        1. Mark Biernat says:

          Yes he is cutting grass for rich people, but he is rich himself in terms of lifestyle and home he owns. I mean there are a lot of people who have made a profitable business providing a service to the wealthy who have no time to live their life. Doctors do this. They help rich people stay healthy after years of stress sitting in their office and they wake up one day and figure out they are just another middle age guy with a weight and heart problem.

          I do not have the wisdom to tell you what you could do. I can tell you I had always love languages and Eastern Europe and I moved there, created websites about this and writing language leaning software. I also loved history and I have this political economy website.

  9. I googled “corporate people suck” and got this blog. I pity you slaves. I am a teacher in a well-respected district. My students respect me. Parents respect me. My principal does not question me. I am the CEO of a pool of high performing kids who represent the future leadership of this country. My colleagues and I help each other to make each child’s educational experience the best it can possibly be. I love it. Just hearing that probably makes some corporate folks writhe in agony. Set yourself free. Follow your passions. Take risks. Live life huge. Don’t get stuck in a cube working away your health so that your directors options go up 1/4 of a point. And don’t you dare tell me IRS not easy or you don’t have a choice. You do have a choice. Every moment you are living and breathing you can choose. Some of them try to get you to think you don’t is all. Listen to your heart. Follow your dreams. Make a difference. You get one life. Are you living it fulfilled, happy, and at peace?

  10. Great blog, in spite of the misspelled words:-)

    I found this site while searching,”why working in corporate sucks”.
    Most of the posters outlined the consistent problems within the flawed corporate structure that rewards self interest and bad behavior to the determent of profit and productivity. It would frustrate anyone with a soul.

    The solution to taking back human power is to not buy, use, pay attention to, think or talk about whatever the greedy corporations sell. They are usually structured like a giant octopus, many deliberately confusing names,levels etc but if you do your “due diligence” you can find out who they are and what they own and stop feeding the corporate monster/stop enabling them. This especially includes banks. “Think outside the box” Use your God given creativity to find alternative solutions such as barter and/or alternative currencies. Do this before the final phase of digitization is in place, i.e. cash /paper and coins become illegal.

    Support the many companies who do treat their employees fairly. Our minds and where we focus our attention is so valuable that wherever the collective focus is, it is worth billions (that we never see) and our rights as individuals eroded, mostly with our consent because nobody takes user agreements seriously.
    Because we are here on this blog, people are waking up and that is good.

  11. Lost in Corporate America says:

    Totally agree about them being the worse kind of people. But they are very good at pretending to be friendly, smiling, asking how was your weekend, even as they are plotting to stab you in the back.

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      I am consulting at a company now which is pretty good I have to say. However, generally everyone if anyone is reads this remember, you will always get paid more for your intelligence applied diligently if you own the process rather than work for the process. I know this is hard to do for most of us and a job means Just Over Broke, you I recommend trying. If you are unhappy with your job, quit and start your own idea.

      The issue is so many Americans are addicted to a lifestyle of cable and cell phone bills and two cars and their disposable income is calculated just to be in sync with current income. Better might be to cheap out on current consumption goods and take money generated in corporate American and apply it to creative endeavors. Yes I have a day job, thank God, but I am doing other things on the side. When the other things work, I unplug from the matrix.

      However, unplugging is not the only benefit. The ego boast just from doing something besides your job is a better bonus then any corporate chief could give you.

  12. I discovered this article googling “Why corporate America sucks”, and Mark you’ve hit on every single thing I’ve encountered in your comments. I mean, to a T. All the things you’ve said are things I’ve experienced. Unfortunately, I’m in a position now where I have to have the health insurance that only corp amer. provides at the price we need. And so I have to sort of … take it. I need a corp job for my family’s sake. So, what I’m trying to focus on – and this is extraordinarly difficult as I’m an INTJ – is how to play the corporate chess game better. It’s not ideal, I know. But mainly, I see everything boiling down to “how not to get checkmated.” It sucks, but that seems to be the game. It’s ok with me because, like you, I have other side projects and personal creative endeavors that really give me a sense of meaning and purpose. So I’m not looking to Corp. Amer. to fulfill anything. I’m only looking to them for a paycheck and health ins. I don’t care to try to “succeed” there, to try to “move up the ladder”, to “come in early and stay late”, to “have ideas”, to “be a star player”, or any of that other BS. I’ve learned my lesson from trying to do those things over and over; they don’t get you anywhere in corp amer. The most incompetent rise to the top simply because they know the rules and happen to play the poker game better. Check out my new twitter feed that documents the lessons learned: http://twitter.com/CorporateChess

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      Look I do consulting and the pay is like three times better, ok maybe double, you just do not get health insurance. But I use Medi-share PPO and it is cheaper than almost any corporate plan. It is an legal no penalty opt out of Universal health care. Most medical issues I found are better dealt with paying cash unless it is catastrophic.

      Corporate America is OK but being part of the Matrix you can only do for so many years until your creativity and will become docile.

      If you have a family, think of side businesses until you can break free. I am a Realtor, I have online businesses, write software for example. All these things are not in the corporate America grind and yet provide for my family when I am not consulting. And you know what, I do pretty well for myself and get to spend time with my family.

      I think my family needs me.

      1. Do what you have to says:

        You have to do what you have to do to support your family. I understand and respect that. If we all had unlimited money, or, very high risk tolerances (like I do), we could say “screw you Corporate America” and walk away. But, as we age we usually take on responsibilities, family, home, car payment, etc. And we have to work somewhere to pay for them. Corporation’s are the largest employers and they’re not all bad (but most that I worked for, sucked, or, they were alright in the beginning when the original, humanistic owners that founded them were still there, but when these people sold out or retired, the organizations sucked). Do what you have to do. That’s life, that’s “Reality 101.”

        1. Mark Biernat says:

          You are wrong. Do you think there is security in corporate America? They will lay you off in a heart beat if the budget changes.
          Better is to upgrade your skills so you can work anywhere.
          This could include consulting.
          This could including having your own business and being confident in yourself.
          I would not want an employee who is just has the job because he is scared about age and bills. I want an employee and to be an employee who could get a job anywhere because they are confident in their abilities.
          Also if you are worried about bills you spend too much. I do not have a cell phone (uses Google Voices for free) I do not have a phone, I do not have cable, I do not have two cars, but one car paid in cash. I do not have a big screen TV. I have an organic garden. I live a super life. My family we read books and take walks the things people did before hyper consumptive paganism overran the USA. I dress well, my wife cuts my hair, I work out with a jump rope instead of a gym and I am fit and smart and confident in my skills. I am learning languages both foreign and computer and I am in my 50s. If you are resigned to life, I am sorry. If you live in fear I am sorry. But live the life you want to life not out fear, be strong and have courage.

          1. TheBigOne says:

            You don’t realize how lucky you are that you live in such a protected bubble. Millions of Americans are scared ‘including us’ thru no fault of their own wondering what the future holds due to job layoffs and major changes as businesses fold or shrink thanks to Obama and Henry Reid.

            It is not just Obama that is the problem a lot of no-Conservatives don’t seem to get. It is his followers that protect him ranging from Congressmen down to the US Media which seems to be the ones running the country *including FAUX news* though to be fair they always have two people to debate on their talk shows where as Liberal stations they shout down/cuss out anybody that’s a Conservative.

        2. Exactly. You have to do what you have to do to support your family. It is what it is. And I think for some of us that’s the necessary evil of corp. Amer.

          1. Mark Biernat says:

            Yes, work in corporate America if you need to but always be working on something else. Do not put your hope in your corporate matrix job. My story is I re-immigrated back to the USA after a decade aboard. I did not feel well and was in horrible pain from medical issues. I brought my family here with two suitcases, no car.
            Three years latter I might make over 200k if my real estate picks up. But I will not make less than 100k. Can you do that so easily in a “stable desk job”? Yes Corp. USA is good for a day job but always be working on your real avocation. It is not about money anyway. It is about doing your God given calling of raising a family and that usually is congruent with spending time with your family more than the office.
            I hear what you are saying just trying to inspire.

      2. Hmm. Medi-share. Man they need some better marketing, because I’ve never heard of anything like this. I was just on their website. How does it work? Seems a little weird to me but I didn’t spend a whole lot of time on the site.

        As for costs, the other factor here you’re sort of missing is that a lot of this depends on where in the US you live. My wife and I live in the most expensive state to live in per capita. Plus she’s self-employed, with no benefits. Plus, she’s 20 yrs old than I, so her health will likely deteriorate well before mine. I mean, not a guarantee; anything can happen. But just going by percentages. We cannot afford no health insurance. Period.

        Listen, I have side businesses and projects as well. but they just don’t generate a whole lot of extra income at the moment. My wife is a piano teacher so it’s not like consulting where you can raise fees with every new client. I’ve done consulting before and you’re right, you can make more money than you can in corp amer. no doubt about it. But you can also make less. Your pay can be $10k/mo and then get suddenly slashed to $5k/mo if you lose your blue chip client. So consulting is not all a bed of roses either. There are pros and cons to each.

        Where we live, the cheapest, crappiest health insurance (ObamaCare) is $821/mo per person, and a $1500 deductible. For a family is is $1750/mo + $1500/mo deductible. I mean, that’s ridiculous. That’s the *cheapest*, poorest level of coverage. Our mortgage alone is $2400/mo. $2400/mo. We haven’t eaten, put gas in the car, paid for medications, done any repairs, that’s JUST mortgage. And just so you don’t think we live in a lavish hut, we’re in a tiny condo that is just large enough for two people.

        That’s the reality of the state where we live (NJ). One could always say, “pick up and move” but of course moving isn’t that easy.

        So while I get where you’re coming from, there are just financial constraints on many of us that *require* working in corp. amer. to make ends meet. For example, I was offered a great job at a startup doing web development (I’m a programmer too). It would be ideal on so many levels. Small, 9 person team, no politics, no soul-sucking corp BS. But they just don’t pay enough, nor do they offer any benefits. And then they’re are pitfalls with this type of environment as well. 4 of 5 startups don’t even make it to 5 years.

        I get where you’re coming from, Mark. I do. But many of us are just not risk-tolerant enough to pursue the kind of life you do.

        1. Mark Biernat says:

          I get it and am sorry you are pressed so hard financially. This is the USA today. Too much went to China and India etc. Real wages have not risen but expenses have.

          NJ is way to expensive and Obamacare is scam. It scams hard working people to pay unreal rates. I do medi-share because I am Christian and believe what they stand for. I am actually Roman Catholic, but it does not hurt the are much cheaper. It might not be for you.

          NJ is no paradise, I would consider another environment. I was born in Philadelphia and a lot of my family live in NJ it is more like surviving but a lot of negativity there and money chasing.

          I quit my career midway in life to live in Poland. Then I moved to moved to Florida. I guess I live with little fear of consequence because I am religious. I trust God is watching over me.
          I still use my brain to do my best but know God is watching over me.

          In Florida, even here with HOAs, CDDs, Taxes before you pay your mortgage you could be paying a lot.
          These alone can be 500 to 1000 dollars a month before you pay your mortgage. Health care exchange wanted like 600 dollars a month. Everyone wants your money before you can pay yourself.

          Here is what I did. I found a place that has no HOA, CDD, and low taxes, my goal is to buy a house in cash. I do medi-share. I got into shape. I did stem cells. I take no medicine.

          Feel you have not the brain power to make it, try Image Streaming by Win Wenger.

          I am not someone who just talks. I hope to make over 200k this year, but I would not mind living in Alabama and working at Walmart if I had to.
          If you ever are on hard times, the government pays the medical bills.
          So maybe you consider re-aligning your financial life with cheap housing somewhere and a different idea for medical care and expenses, basically I was living with my family on about 1,500 dollars a month. I know most can not do this but maybe 2,000 dollars or 3,000 dollars a month. Keep searching for a way.
          Use City-data forum to compare life in different places.
          I do not have the answers, but I know for me, I can not imagine living up north, the land of taxes and heating bills.

          1. The Affordable Care Act (i.e. ObamaCare) is not a scam. Everyone who thinks this has no clue. Plans are *always* affordable, because premiums for the “Silver Plan” can not exceed 9.5% of your income with only one exception.

            In fact, if you are making less than 300% of the Federal Poverty Line then your share of income going to premiums keeps going down until it hits 0%.

            The one exception to all of this is the ideologically states that suppressed their residents by not participating in the Medicaid expansion. Don’t worry though, that only screws the working poor, not you or the extremely poor. Just the people actually trying to make ends meet.

            Back on the main subject, one of the reasons I don’t have kids is because I consider working in the United States so miserable that I would never bring a child into this world. We have a Puritan culture that values work over family, and actually promotes misery as a good thing. That’s why we constantly have politicians talking about how great sacrifice is. Most people in the United States think suffering is a necessary part of life and if there isn’t a fair amount of it in your life then you must be doing something immoral.

            I can’t tell you how many martyrs I’ve met at work. They are miserable and expect you to respect them, because they’ve made themselves so miserable for the “good” of the company.

          2. Mark Biernat says:

            You are wrong. I have no house, one car and a 10,000 dollar deductible cost 650 dollars a month from socialized medical care (that is is why I opted out in addition to moral reasons). That is a mortgage payment and a rip off. I spent months on the phone with the Government health care people and they confirmed. You are quoting things you do not understand.
            I wrote the main center for an appeal in Kentucky. It is a mindless bureaucratic system that does takes money and redistributes it. For example, I was teaching English abroad, a good thing, and for years I have had little income and assets for my family. Now I have a temporary consulting job where I get paid a good hourly rate. It pushed me into their eyes as someone who should “pay their fair share”. We have one broken down car and no house. My job is temporary yet I have to pay for other people’s birth control.

            I lived in a post communist country which I am a citizen of. The US health care is nothing more than social medical coverage. They jack prices up and bill insurance and society as a whole is poorer.

            If I pay cash for an MRI for example it is $250. If I use insurance it is $2,500 dollars. You are living in a bubble that has no connection to reality.

            I have been to the doctor a couple of times in my whole life, why do I need to pay that much for nothing?
            Why do I have to pay for some fast food eating lazy guy who does not have a fitness program and take prescriptions medications instead of natural treatments. You can quote me extreme examples but this can be addressed through private venues.

            I have no problem with charity, but many of my neighbors are perfectly healthy but live on disability and take medications. I am not exaggerating either. So your money is going to that.

            I did adipose derived stem cells to heal my body and insurance does not pay for that. But it worked. Explain to me the sense in that?

            Also where in the constitution does it say, you know the highest law in the country, that each citizen has the right to medical insurance as prescribed by the government? Half the stuff in medical care is nonsense, painkillers and scripts that masks symptoms.
            Why do people who take care of themselves live longer than those who use the system?
            That money pays for abortion and other things that are abominations of humanity. And they are do not let your political correctness rationalizes that.

  13. Hey Mark, just discovered your blog by typing why corporate life sucks. I’m in my 30’s and I got really tired of corporate world. But mostly due to lack of work-life balance here in the US. Why did you move from Poland back to the US? I’m thinking about moving to Europe now, mostly because of their universal healthcare and more vacation/time off policy. I want to start a family soon, but healthcare in the US is so overpriced and tied to a company. By myself I probably would not be able afford it. Also, I guess Europe would give me more opportunities to travel (more time off). What’s your advise?

    1. Mark Biernat says:

      I moved back because I wanted my daughter to get exposure to English as a native speaker and for her to spend time with her grandparents here. I lived off the grid for a few years in the USA but now back consulting. I do not mind consulting as I am not a direct employee and I am working on entrepreneurial endeavors on the side until my out the box activities exceed my consulting.

      Yes go to Europe if you can, but you will need a visa. If you want to have children have them anywhere. I worked doing taxes and I saw families of five making under twenty thousand a year. You can get government help and live frugal. Sounds crazy coming from a libertarian but as much as I am a libertarian and I am, I believe life is sacred and family is more important than money.

      I recommend a radical reorientation of your life perspective, by living somewhere really poor either in the USA or aboard. I did and now I can live in the USA and not care about money or the cost of health care. In the USA you can opt out of health care and look for a better route. I opted out myself and do a Christan share and pay less for more coverage. The best medical care us not covered with insurance like PRP or stem cells. Your path will be different from mine but think out of the box. Try different things including living as an expiate. I highly recommend this. If there is a will there is a way, try to look for a way to get a visa to another country, maybe based on your grandparents.

    2. TheBigOne says:

      The great thing that used to be about the USA is you weren’t required to pay for Health Care.

      We are a lower middle class which Dad works his butt off and we spend wisely only paying what we can afford but have had a lot of medical emergencies some major but we have never used insurance except for some major surgeries.

      We have always payed in cash and found out you actually get a 10 percent discount if you have it.

      In Europe you are not allowed to pay in cash even if you have it from years of savings and want to pay all or some of it all to downsize the monthly payments which suck as they never tell you what it will be. You keep getting bill after bill.

      1. Mark Biernat says:

        My insurance price for an MRI $2,500 dollars. My cash price $250. Insurance is kind of a scam. I also question the value of many proceedures being recommended from CAT scans on children to antibiotics to excess use of painkillers and mood changing medications.

  14. I agree that Corporate America sucks. In CA, people have roles to play and that is what it’s all about. I have seen many jerks working in CA who have college degrees and I really don’t know how they got their degrees. In CA, you have to work hard and play the game in order to survive. Individuals work many hours and are stressed out, but this is how they have to live in order to pay bills. When you think you are doing a good job, they sometimes surprise you and lay you off or fire you for some phony reasons. It is incomprehensible. The great philosopher, Karl Marx, said that capitalism is unfair and one day there will be a violent revolution from the workers. To date, this violent revolution has not occurred, but I do know that there are many unhappy, stressed people who work in Corporate America and are constantly seeing their doctors for different illnesses and suffer from depression. I agree that healthcare is extremely unaffordable and now they are threatening to fine those people who do not have health coverage. How do they expect people to pay the exorbitant prices to cover themselves and their families? It is not fair.

  15. James Pennock says:

    Here was my last farewell article to the corporate rat race I left behind. I called it 10 Unethical Tips For Climbing the Corporate Ladder. It’s a quick read. Hope you enjoyed it.

    linkedin.com/pulse/20141030180158-129326300-10-unethical-tips-for-climbing-the-corporate-ladder

  16. Jackie Sparks says:

    I worked for years free from the shackles of corporate america. Due to some life circumstances I ended up taking a corporate job to survive and support a family. After years of making corporations money, watching ass-kissers climb, petty back stabbers and unbearable politics, I am paying highly with physical and mental health. Corporate america will suck the life out of your life and soul. Corporate “cultures” do nothing to aide or uplift the cubicle shackled employee. I can only pray I can leave this never ending, mind-numbing grind making others rich before it kills me, literally. Getting up to go to work is almost unbearable. Until I can escape, I can only hope I will survive. Corporate america sucks the joy out of life and crushes the soul. I work for….Corporate America death of your soul. I am striving for freedom, peace, contentment and a fulfilling human existence. People were not meant to spend time in cubes.

  17. Teddy Bonkers says:

    I have been in corporate America for about 14 years now with no success just setbacks, depression and anger (at myself for still being in corporate America). I have trained new temps that were related to some high boss in the company that took my job. This happen twice in two different companies in the past 14 years. It is like I have been having a bad dream.

    This is the corporate world. They use the experience people to bring in cheaper labor. If it has not happened to you it will. Experience is rewarded it is based on who can manage up the best.

    In my own opinion, I think working for a firm, a large company that is, slowly takes your values and ideals.

    You have just motivated me and given me my self respect back, and I am going to follow my dreams and go for it like I should have.

  18. The corporate world is bulls***. I got fired recently, my boss and I never saw eye to eye but he would conveniently take credit for my work. That also doesn’t even address the fact that I was hired for two people’s positions, and expected to do both jobs. Finally I just got burnt out, and stated that at which point they let me go. I couldn’t have been happier. Absolutely soulless environment in which hall monitors inhabit mid level management, and, while anecdotal, are real life examples of just how how real the Peter Principal is. The lying, manipulation, dishonesty, and back stabbing is absolutely real, and not an exaggeration. Yes, I’m a millennial and that somehow seems to always be the rationalization for my discontent, the insinuation being that I don’t know what hard work is, or that I’m part of an entitled generation. That might be true, except for the part where I enlisted in the marine corps infantry straight out of high school and went to Iraq during the most violent period of the war. I left the military because I thought that the private sector would afford independent thought, genuine career growth, and a willingness to adopt new methods and structures of doing business. It’s not that. At all. I know what hard work is, and quite figging frankly, it’s not my job to do my bosses job for him or her. I’ve hit a brick wall. Incompetence and stupidity is not only acceptable, but rewarded. I’m on the younger end, early 30s, and have been at this since I finished college, some 6 years now. I’m not tied down to anything, no kids, no wife, no mortgage, and I am pretty confident that I’m done with this garbage given the flexibility I have. There are, in fact, companies that value the well being of the employee. I have not found them, and I’m not going to spend my entire career looking for that diamond in the rough, only to get fat and die another mid level corporate hack.

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