I get it, Ms. Youngblood. And I agree with much of what you say, including this: Stop trying to force people to the next level. I could not agree more, and I have never said otherwise. We would have a big problem if everyone wanted to move into management. And I am sure that many people feel the same way you do about work being a means to an end. As you say, if you are meeting the requirements of the job, you have every right to embrace your mediocrity. The difference between you and most people, I believe, is that you know you are a mediocre employee. In fact, you defend it. Good for you. An honest, self-aware person. And I certainly agree that no one needs to be a slave to a company.
But I have rights, too and not just my right to an opinion. As the owner of a business, I have the right to avoid hiring someone who only wants to do the bare minimum to get a paycheck. In fact, if I hire too many people with that attitude, I will be out of business. This is Capitalism 101, survival of the ttest. I operate in a very competitive market. I dont have any patents, any special marketing magic, or any secret recipes. My companies can only exist and grow if they do a much-better-than-average job.