Marxism and the Corporate World

Marxism and the Corporate World

Marxism and the Corporate World

Being born in a communist family I was always educated about the marxism and what Karl Marx taught about socialism. Somehow as an youngster i sort of equated socialism with being poor, the right to strike, the right not to work and still demand wages, etc. As I grew up I of course realised that I was wrong but I used to be still intrigued as to why most communist leaders used to oppose anything which would mean profits. Was Profit such a bad word? Did Karl Marx really say being rich was being bad? Why was making profits such a bad thing? Why was communism in my state equated with anti business? Why was it said that communism killed the work culture? And that is when I got to actually doing some fact finding myself about what Karl Marx actually said. What Marx actually said was that wealth of a company belonged to its workers and compensation depended on his value brought into the company. But tell me how can a company be wealthy if its workers are on strike. How can a company be wealthy if people do not work and consider a right to still be employed a birthright? Now Marx never said be lazy, did he? I once remember ages ago hearing an interview of a marxist labour union leader from West Bengal who said he had met a labour union leader in China. Apparently during his meeting it came out that his Chinese counterpart was agitating against the management cause of some treatment meted out to an employee. Of course the gentleman in question asked his Chinese friend why were they not going on a strike and I still remember what his Chinese counterpart had said “I am a labour union leader. If there is no labour being done then what am I a leader of? I will protest but stopping work is not the way of doing it.” Those words struck me even then and yet I saw my state lumbering its way through countless strikes and corporates moving away. Not one labour union leader realised that wealth cannot be distributed unless wealth is created. Some say Karl Marx’s theory is redundant in today’s world. But I feel its the most relevant in the world of today. If an employee’s pay is directly related to the welfare of the firm then both will be profitable. If every employee is a stake holder, then before going on strikes . If every employee is a stake holder then every employee will think twice before being lazy at work. If every employee’s benefit’s depended on the company’s welfare they would think a million times before they force a firm to accept an errant employee back as that errant employee would result in the company’s profit margin coming down. After all the end intention is to distribute wealth and unless its created it can never be distributed. And Karl Marx never said don’t be rich. Infosys is one of the greatest example of the above theory being a success. They created wealth and they distributed it among its employees. But you see nothing in this world came free. Hence each employee was made a stakeholder of that company. So if you want the wealth you have to work for it. The fruits of labour cannot come unless you have a stake in that business. I know many people will say this is simplifying the entire problem. Maybe it is. But its still better than the world where I came from where communism became synonym with strikes and laziness. And its certainly a start to ending the never ending enmity that capitalism and communism cannot co-exist. In today’s world the only way ahead is a synergy of both the thoughts. One needs to reinvent the wheel today if one has to survive and if communism has to survive in India, it has to befriend the corporate world and accept that making money is not all that bad.

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