Mgmt 583 Chapter 7: Union Avoidance Fall 2008
Capitalism v. Unionism • Capitalism is based on the premises that entrepreneurs use their resources to create process to produce goods or services for a profit. • Employers are entitled to profits because they took the risk. • Employers and employees enjoy EAW rights. • Trade unionists contend that wealth is ultimately created by the worker who produces the product. • Workers are entitled to a greater share of the wealth they produce. • Workers enjoy job property rights. • Workers have a right to a role in determining work rules.
Union-Free • A union-free organization is one which is entirely unorganized in its U.S. operations. • There are two types of union-free organizations: • Doctrinaire organizations – those explicitly design to initiate HR policies that cause employees to resist labor unions (Nissan in Smyrna, TN). • Philosophy-laden organizations – those who avoid unions because of their excellent employee relations.
Environmental Factors Associated with Union Avoidance • Geographic location • Unionism is strongest in Northeast & Midwest. • Unionism is weakest in the South. • Rural locations are preferable over urban. • Plant size • Plants should be larger than 200 and avoid exceeding 500. • Demographics • High percentage of white-collar/professional industries harder to organize. • High percentage of women.
Philosophy-Laden Approaches to Union Avoidance • Wage Policies • Lead the market • Merit pay • Open pay systems • Skill-based pay • Nonwage Policies • Formalized job posting systems • Cleary delineated promotion policies • Good training & development programs • Career planning • Effective feedback/performance appraisal • Efficient selection & development of managers
Philosophy-Laden Approaches to Union Avoidance • Employment security • Clearly defined work rules that are consistently enforced. • Even under EAW, employers should make it policy to only terminate employees for a good reason. • In union-free workplaces employers get to determine employee rights, under a union workplace, the employees will determine their rights. • Provide expanded separation incentives or redeployment opportunities if RIFs occur. • Retraining • Work-sharing
Philosophy-Laden Approaches to Union Avoidance • Employee Voice Systems • Internal complaint resolution systems • There is no legal or contractual obligation to do this, but it is good HR policy. • Due process is the “right” thing to do. • Appellate mechanisms. • Open-door policies to enhance employee access to management. • Attitude surveys to monitor employee perceptions. • Subordinate evaluations of supervisors (personally not recommended)
Philosophy-Laden Approaches to Union Avoidance • Other Innovative Techniques • Employer/Employee committees (a.k.a. employee empowerment committees) • Electromation, Inc. v. NLRB (1994)
Caveat on Employer/Employee Committees • Under the NLRB’s Electromation decision, a two-step inquiry is required to determine whether an employer has violated §§ 8(a)(2) & (1) of the NLRA by dominating, interfering with, or supporting an employee committee: • First is the employer/employee committee a “labor organization” under the NLRA? A “labor organization” exists if it involves : (1) employee participation, (2) a purpose to deal with employers, (3) concerning itself with wages, hours, or conditions of employment. Source: Electromation, Inc. v. NLRB, 35 F.3d 1148, 1157-58 (7th Cir. 1994); see also, EFCO Corp. v. NLRB, 2000 U.S. App. LEXIS 10909 (4th Cir. 2000) (declaring an employee safety committee to be a labor organization in violation of § 8(a)(2) .
Caveat on Employer/Employee Committees • Second, if it is a “labor organization” under the NLRA is it unlawful dominated by the employer? A “labor organization” is unlawfully dominated if the employer interfers with: (1) the formation (2) administration of, or (3) contributes financial and other support to, the “labor organization.” Source: Electromation, Inc. v. NLRB, 35 F.3d 1148, 1157-58 (7th Cir. 1994);EFCO Corp. v. NLRB, 2000 U.S. App. LEXIS 10909 (4th Cir. 2000).
Management Campaign Tactics • Influence • Captive audience speeches to present management campaign themes. • Small group and individual meetings. • Letters, posters, bulletin boards, and other written communications. • Video presentations
Management Campaign Tactics • External Contextual Control • Use of regulatory agency procedures. • Ensuring union does not violate §7. • Enforcing the Republic Aviation rule. • Delaying the election. • Using linkages with community institutions (banks, churches, newspapers, churches, etc.)
Management Campaign Tactics • Intra-unit Contextual Control • Supervisory training. • No vote committees. • Refuse access to employees of labor unions (i.e., organizers). • Neutrality agreements (NEVER, NEVER, sign one unless you want the union)
Neutrality Agreements • Neutrality agreement - a contract between a union and an employer under which the employer agrees to support a union's attempt to organize its workforce. • They impose a gag order on speech not favorable to the union. • An agreement stating that the employer will not campaign against the union while union agents solicit signed authorization cards. • Often done to avoid a corporate campaign. • A corporate campaign is a “top down” organizing approach in which the union attacks the employer’s public image, makes it difficult for the employer to conduct business, and then pressures top level management to succumb to union demands.
Neutrality Agreements • Most neutrality agreements include a “card check” agreement. Under such an agreement, employees are not permitted to vote on union representation in a secret ballot election monitored by the NLRB. • Instead, the employer pledges to recognize the union automatically if a certain number of signed union authorization cards are collected. • This gives the union permission to come on company property during work hours • Source: The Facts On Union Certification By Card Check (May 2006) Hospitality Labor Letter http://www.fisherphillips.com/showarticle.aspx?Ref=list&Type=1119&Cat=3387&Show=3835
Management Campaign Tactics • Monitoring • Attitude surveys • Surveillance • Reports from management loyalists
Management Campaign Themes • Bargaining Impact Themes (what you say must be true). • Strikesmay occur. • High union dues and initiation fees (Communications Workers of America may take the first pay check - $1000 [local 43] plus 2.25%). • 60.6% to the local • 23.2% to the international • Remainder to CB assistance, government relations & social action, education & research, etc. • Source: CWA Local 9510, Orange, CA http://pages.sbcglobal.net/cwa9510/dues.htm
Management Campaign Themes • Bargaining Impact Themes • Potential for fines and assessments by the union. • Locals may levy special assessments in cases of emergency or when dues are insufficient to finance the local. • Members can be fined for: • Not paying dues. • Violating the constitution or local bylaws. • Failing to comply with a lawful decision of the union or local. • Working without proper union authorization during a strike • Violating adopted standards for wages and hours, or working conditions. • Unions cannot guarantee any changes. • Bargaining may actually reduce wages and benefits.
Management Campaign Themes • Anti-Union Themes • Union may interfere with good employee/employer relations. • Unions can be dominated from outsiders. • The union has failed else where. • Some unions are corrupt. • Some unions do not represent your view (may be leftist, pro-abortion, pro-immigration, etc.) • Unionism is inconsistent with the employee and the community. • Unions will subject the worker to their rules (boycotts, crossing picket lines, strike votes, etc.)
Management Campaign Themes • Pro-Company Themes • Management has treated workers well. • Workers currently enjoy good wages (this is why you should lead the market. • Workers enjoy good working conditions. • If workers are unhappy, the union is a nuclear option, give the company another chance.
ADAMS MARK HOTELS BIG LEAGUE THEATRICALS ROAD COMPANY 'MISS SAIGON‘ (Actor’s Equity) ECHOSTAR DISH NETWORK (CWA) ALGOOD FOODS (Reeses peanut butter) (IBT) DIAMOND WALNUT CO (IBT) ADAM'S MARK HOTEL, Buffalo, NY (International Union of Operating Engineers) BEST WESTERN-GROSVENOR RESORT (UNITE HERE) FOUR POINTS BY SHERATON (UNITE HERE) GRAND HOTEL Minneapolis (UNITE HERE) KSL RECREATION (Emerald Pointe (Lake Lanier, GA); Hotel del Coronado (Coronado, CA); La Costa Resort & Spa (Carlsbad, CA); La Quinta Resort (Palm Springs, CA); PGA West (Palm Springs, CA); Arizona Biltmore Resort (Phoenix, AZ) (UNITE HERE) NEW OTANI HOTEL & GARDEN (UNITE HERE) TURTLE BAY RESORT (UNITE HERE) R.J. REYNOLDS TOBACCO CO. (Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union) VANCE SECURITY (SEIU) WACKENHUT SECURITY (SEIU) Products and Companies Currently under Boycott by AFL-CIO
Who is UNITE HERE? • UNITE (formerly the Union of Needletrades, Textiles and Industrial Employees) and HERE (Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees International Union) merged on July 8, 2004 forming UNITE HERE. The union represents more than 440,000 active members and more than 400,000 retirees throughout North America. In 2005 they joined the Change to Win Federation