Often at these economic summits, surrounded by like-minded, well-heeled individuals as themselves these types will get on a roll and just say what they really think instead of saying something more guarded and politically correct as they would do at other public or media appearances. Such was the case recently when Australian Tim Gurner, head of the Gurner Group with a portfolio in excess of $9.5B imparted his sage advice to make Australia’s broader workforce more productive.
His comments were not well-received.
Source: The Guardian
The Australian multimillionaire Tim Gurner has apologised for the controversial comments he made at a property summit on Tuesday, saying he deeply regrets his remarks and they “were wrong”.
On Tuesday, Gurner, who is a property developer and founder of the Gurner Group, drew fierce backlash after he suggested at the event held by the Australian Financial Review that unemployment should increase by 40% to 50% to create more productive workers.
“At the AFR Property Summit this week I made some remarks about unemployment and productivity in Australia that I deeply regret and were wrong,” Gurner said in a statement released on Thursday.
“My comments were deeply insensitive to employees, tradies and families across Australia who are affected by these cost-of-living pressures and job losses.”
Ok, so what did Gurner say that was so insensitive?
I think the problem that we’ve had is that people decided they didn’t really want to work so much any more through COVID. And that has had a massive effect on productivity. You know, tradies have definitely pulled back on productivity. They have been paid a lot to do not too much in the last few years, and we need to see that change.
We need to see unemployment rise – unemployment has to jump 40 to 50 per cent, in my view.
We need to see pain in the economy. We need to remind people that they work for the employer, not the other way around. There’s been a systematic change where employees feel the employer is extremely lucky to have them, as opposed to the other way around. It’s a dynamic that has to change.
A certain U.S. Congresswoman took note of his comments.