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Midterm Study Guide

Midterm Study Guide - Collective Bargaining Study Guide...

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Collective Bargaining – Study Guide Chapter 1 Theories/Perspectives on Labor: Marxist o Focuses on class conflict - the pain of the exploitation and alienation inflicted on workers by the capitalistic system would eventually lead to the revolutionary overthrow of the system and replacement with a Marxist economic and social system o Marx supported trade unions in their struggles for higher wages but believed they should simultaneously pursue the overthrow of the system o Labor versus capital Neoclassical Economics o Emphasizes unconstrained labor markets Managerialist (Unitarist/Human Resources) o Focus on management o Views labor and management as having common not opposing interests Institutional o Emphasizes need for institutions regulating markets; bargaining between labor and management Assumptions about Labor and Conflict Labor is more than just a commodity. Multiple interests of labor, management, and government must be taken into account. Conflict is an inherent and normal part of industrial relations. Labor and management have common as well as conflicting interests. There are trade-offs among conflicting goals of labor, management, and government. The Institutional Perspective on Labor Founders: John R. Commons o Father of American industrial relations” o Played a key role in laying intellectual groundwork for “The New Deal” in the early 20 th Century o Shoemakers article (1909): idea of unions taking wages out of competition Sydney and Beatrice Webb o British social reformers o Emphasized need for balance of power between employers and employees o Identified three union strategies: Collective bargaining Mutual insurance Legal enactment Rejected the arguments set forth by Marx Commonalities between Commons, Marx and the Webbs: 1
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1. Saw work as being too central to the interests and welfare of workers to be treated simply as just another factor of production 2. Under conditions of “free competition” most individual workers deal with the employer from a position of unequal bargaining power; thereby tilting the balance of power in favor of the employer Institutionalists Two Basic Labor Policies: Legislation to protect the rights of workers to join unions The legislation on such workplace issues such as safety and health, child labor, minimum wages, unemployment and workers compensation an social security Three-Tiered (Level) Framework The Participants: o Labor Employees Unions o Management/Employers Owners and shareholders Top executives and line managers IR and HR personnel o Government/The Public Local, state and federal political processes Government agencies Governmental representative of public interest The Goals of each of the Participants: o Labor Wages, benefits, safety conditions and employee job satisfaction o Management Effects of collective bargaining on labor costs, productivity, profits, product quality, and the degree of managerial control o Public
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