Markets and incentives

Published by Priyanka on

Sometimes, during our travels, my husband and I love to explore non-touristy neighbourhoods in a city. So, recently, when we were in Budapest, we went into the central market. I was very happy to find vegetables that I never find in Barcelona and was contemplating smuggling a few of them back on my RyanAir flight, but eventually didn’t. 

But while I was there, I noticed something interesting. The shops at the entrance of the market had lousy veggies while the ones bang in the middle had way better (fresher and more variety) stock, but surprisingly, the fresher vegetables were marginally cheaper. After some thought I realised that the market was incentivising people for making the extra effort in going deeper into the market by offering them a discount. This is similar to the marriage market. 

I came across this video. I couldn’t make up my mind about what was worse – a job interview or an arranged marriage interview. Nevertheless, being in the market sucks, especially if you’ve always hated shopping and always secretly prayed that you’d fall in love with the first thing you laid your eyes upon in a store.

But, why aren’t markets designed to get you out at the earliest? They keep wanting you to stay on while your chances of succeeding only get slimmer until the priest says “Moovath varshad mudukruge yell sigthare hudugeeru, adu Engineeru alla” (How can a 30 yr old grandpa (oldie) find a bride, and that too he’s not even an engineer).

How many times have you applied for jobs on Linkedin and received a response in a week or two (actually, do you even get a response??!!). But in the hope of getting one you stay on. There are thousands, if not millions of people on matrimonial sites, who’ve been on it for years with very little success. This is not because these people are ugly or dumb, it’s simply because this market isn’t designed to get you out quickly.

They lack efficiency, they deliver poor customer service and they secretly want you to stay on forever. Even if the market conjures negative feedback, so be it but I’d like to get it over with like most people who’re in the market today. Even if you’re a shop-oholic, you’re bound to get tired after a 100 chow-chow baths. No?

If you think you can escape the wrath of trying to land a job by flying solo (being an entrepreneur), you’ll probably enjoy far higher returns (wink).