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More Work, Less Pay: A Model COVID Showed Us That Won’t Work

“Just 2 weeks.” A sentence many of us heard during the beginning of the pandemic that we believed would be true. As those weeks turned to months and months turned to years, we started to realize that this virus would soon turn life as we know it upside down.


While restrictions caused us to start wearing masks and social distance from one another, they also forced some businesses to close or cut down on employees. With customers still waiting to be serviced, and those employees still on the payroll taking on the roles of two people, something was bound to give. And what gave was the mental health of many. 


A survey conducted by United Way of the National Capital Area found that 37.3% of people said that their workload increased during the pandemic, while only 27.7% saw an increase in earnings. In addition, the survey found that 1 in 2 people said their work-related stress increased. So where does that leave us now?


While we’re still in a pandemic in 2022, we have advanced beyond where we were in 2020. Many corporations saw that workers were being spread thin and began increasing their starting wages, an emphasis has been placed on mental health in corporate America, and remote/hybrid work have seen an uptick as many people have realized you can be just as productive in a home office rather than in a cubicle.


While COVID-19 did place a toll on many in the workplace, it’s also shaped how we view work today and in the future. That old work hard for your money mindset and putting up with more work with less pay is frowned upon and knowing your worth and speaking up in the workplace is now a societal norm that could be here to stay.

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