Thursday, July 1, 2010

Competence Trap – Addendum

Here's a quick addendum to competence trap, with one more of its implications.

Let's say that a couple decides that one of them will go to work and earn, and the other will stay back and manage the home front. Additionally, they decide that once every two years, they will alternate roles, switching who stays at home and who goes to work. They feel that this would be very fair.

However, such seemingly equitable arrangements won't make economic sense for the couple. The reason for this is the power of the competence trap. Even if the couple is able to get their respective offices to go along with their proposed arrangement, they will end up with sub-par promotion opportunities being presented to either of them. In the long run, they will end up with below average salaries.

Instead, if one of them had continued to work, that person would have become more and more competent at what they do, and would likely have enjoyed better financial compensation.

Related post: Competence Trap

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