Outsourcing or outsmarting?

You remember the news about the American programmer who outsourced his job to a Chinese for a pittance? Well, did you know Damien Hirst doesn’t do his art? Only Students, of course, are not allowed to outsource their work (unless it’s a form of group work). What then constitutes as the fine line? Lucy Kellaway writes smarts again:

Otherwise the arrangement has a lot going for it and has a fine pedigree. Getting someone else to do your work is the basis of capitalism. It is the oil that makes organisations run smoothly. The more senior and the better paid you are, the less you end up doing yourself: it is called delegation.

In any case, all sorts of people give their names to the labour of others. Damien Hirst employs about 100 artists in a factory and has boasted that he likes to sit and watch them work. No one expects politicians to write their own speeches. We know many academics get their PhD students to do their research for them. Fashion designers don’t generally design their own clothes. Colonel Sanders doesn’t make his own fried chicken – though that is partly because he is dead.

via If I outsourced my work, would you care? – FT.com.

On a related note: “on the whole, poorer people typically work harder” via The Guardian

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