Living W And Wo Unions


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Living W And Wo Unions

  1. 1. Unions: Living With and Without Them Presented By: Mark R. Adams, SPHR
  2. 2. Agenda Understanding what the union organizers look for in potential targets Gauging employees current satisfaction with the organization Reviewing policies and procedures you should have Assessing the impact of your supervisors/managers Recognizing the signs that a campaign may be underway. Supervisory do’s and don’ts Supervisory/Management behaviors
  3. 3. Vulnerability – Who Is a Target?
  4. 4. Vulnerability – Who Is a Target?Everyone is a target…. Unions are businesses Unions will organize ANYONE. Economic landscape is used to their advantage Some industries more pre- disposed than others.
  5. 5. Vulnerability – Are YOU a Target?Are some bigger targets than others?FY 2009 Union Win Rates: Health Care = 70.1% Admin. Support Services = 81.7% Prof./Scientific/Tech. Services = 51.5% Manufacturing = 45.1%Source: National Labor Relations Board
  6. 6. What Are Unions Targeting?Unions target employee whom they can motivate to join a union based on non-economic/social as well as financial factors such as: 1. Wages 2. Ineffective Management 3. Family, Education, etc. 4. Insecurity 5. ChangeUnions will tailor their organizing strategy based on initial feedback and research from employees.
  7. 7. Question of the Day What is a union’s win rate when compensation is the main issue? 33% Source: Proskauer & Rose LLP
  8. 8. Question of the Day What is a union’s win rate when working conditions and fairness were the main issue? __%
  9. 9. Question of the Day What is a union’s win rate when working conditions and fairness were the main issue? 69% Source: Proskauer & Rose LLP
  10. 10. Main Reasons for Organizing Respect and employee satisfaction with an organization play a more pivotal role than compensation when it comes to successful union organizing efforts.
  11. 11. Main Reasons for OrganizingSpecific examples that drive union interest: Claims of unfair or inconsistent treatment Lack of written rules and policies Policies, procedures and practices are not understood Rules are inconsistently enforced Lack of documentation Failure to provide competent leadership Lack of recognition and appreciation Lack of communication
  12. 12. Main Reasons for OrganizingSpecific examples that drive union interest: Lack of employee participation Employees not feeling part of the team Perceived inequity in pay and benefits Lack of positive perception of employer Failure to recognize seniority Neglect of safety or hygiene matters Fear regarding job security Failure of management to follow through with promises
  13. 13. Gauging Employee SatisfactionQuestions to consider on employee satisfaction….Policy-related questions: Are your policies consistently applied? Are your policies consistently communicated? Are your policies updated and documented? Are your policies “fair”?
  14. 14. Gauging Employee SatisfactionQuestions to consider on employee satisfaction….Managerial-related questions: Are employees properly trained for their job? Are performance reviews done consistently? On-time? Is exceptional performance recognized? Is pay based on merit? Is underperformance identified and responsively dealt with? Are employees treated fairly? Does management actively investigate and/or respond to employee requests and concerns?
  15. 15. Gauging Employee SatisfactionQuestions to consider on employee satisfaction….Communication-related questions: Are staff meetings held? Employee’s role? How accountable is management to employees?  Taking responsibility for bad decisions or actions as well as good ones?  Explain actions to employees for important or unpopular decisions? (not just what was done but why?) Have you done an employee opinion survey within the last 12 months? If so, did you follow-up on recommended changes? Are language barriers overcome in communicating policies, benefits, performance reviews and conveying management expectations? Are you engaging in open dialogue about company’s position on unions?
  16. 16. Gauging Employee SatisfactionQuestions to consider on employee satisfaction….Training-related questions: Are employees properly trained for their job?Other questions:• Does management take pro-active role in explaining benefits and enrolling employees into benefit programs?
  17. 17. Policies and ProceduresThe policies and procedures that your company adopts play a pivotal role in how employees view your organization.Do you have the following policies in your handbook?: Union-Free/Employee Relations Policy Solicitation/Distribution Policy Outside Employment Policy Bulletin Board Policy Open Door Policy Progressive Discipline Policy Dispute Resolution Policy
  18. 18. Policies and ProceduresUnion-Free/Employee Relations Policy: Pro-actively convey company philosophy of how employees are to be treated by company Company’s responsibility in positioning employees to succeed in their jobs Define company’s viewpoint on unions.
  19. 19. Policies and ProceduresUnion-Free/Employee Relations Policy:Specific elements: Not anti-union – be pro-employee Prefer to deal with employees as individuals – listen to problems and resolve their grievances on an individual basis Would to be able to continue to recognize them for individual contributions and reward them for own performance
  20. 20. Policies and ProceduresUnion-Free/Employee Relations Policy:Specific elements: Not anti-union – be pro-employee Prefer to deal with employees as individuals – listen to problems and resolve their grievances on an individual basis Would to be able to continue to recognize them for individual contributions and reward them for own performance
  21. 21. Policies and ProceduresUnion-Free/Employee Relations Policy:Specific elements: Business – success has been based on your ability to meet or exceed your customer requirements If you continue to grow and provide opportunities must maintain flexibility to respond instantly to changes in customer demands
  22. 22. Policies and ProceduresUnion-Free/Employee Relations Policy:Specific elements: Must be able to change quickly, better and more cost- effectively than your competition Motivation to produce quality products is higher in a non-unionized environment Employees should know that the authorization cards are legally binding
  23. 23. Policies and ProceduresSolicitation/Distribution Policy: Is it compliant? Does it define when solicitations and/or distributions are permitted and prohibited? Does management commit to applying the policy fairly and consistently?
  24. 24. Policies and ProceduresOutside Employment Policy: Does it balance company and personal interests or needs? Is it clear? Does it provide for open dialogue to evaluate situations before company action is taken?
  25. 25. Policies and ProceduresBulletin Policy: Do you prohibit all employee postings and reserve for company purposes only?or…. Do you permit employee postings on a board?
  26. 26. Policies and ProceduresOpen Door Policy: Do you provide employees with an open channel to HR or other top management to discuss their issues or concerns? Do you provide employees with opportunities to take advantage of this mechanism without postings on a board?
  27. 27. Policies and ProceduresProgressive Discipline Policy: Does the policy provide for ample steps to allow for employees to change their behavior? Are the steps clearly defined? Are the steps fair in their application? Is documentation developed in implementing policy clearly developed and communicated?
  28. 28. Assessing Supervisory ImpactInternal data sources:  Employee Opinion Surveys  Focus Groups  360 Degree Assessments  Supervisory Assessments made by top management/HR
  29. 29. Assessing Supervisory ImpactFormal outreach:  With organization via employee opinion surveys  With supervisors via 360 degree assessmentsPitfalls:  Defining expectation of change  Timing of delivery.
  30. 30. AFL-CIO Organizing Survey PERSONAL CONTACT IS THE MOST EFFECTIVE MEANS OF ORGANIZING  House Calls: 78% win rate when ¾ of unit are visited  Mailings: 39% win rate  Telephone Calls: 40% win rate
  31. 31. So How Does an Organizer Get anEmployee to Sign a Card?►Would anyone in the room like a raise? SIGN THE CARD. CARD►What about free health insurance? SIGN THE CARD. CARD►More Staff? SIGN THE CARD. CARD►Less weekend work? SIGN THE CARD. CARD►How about just getting some more information on us? SIGN THE CARD. CARD
  32. 32. Authorization Card
  33. 33. Union Organizing Process Union Authorization Cards A petition can be filed upon a “showing of interest” -30% of employees who the Union has determined could be part of a bargaining unit – normally looking for 50% Notification to employer that a petition has been filed Employer can recognize a union upon showing of the cards
  34. 34. Union Organizing Process Review appropriateness of who can vote  Scope of bargaining unit  Types of jobs, geographic scope  Supervisors? Don’t count. Once granted, election takes place within 42 days – FOR NOW! Secret-ballot election 50% plus one of those that actually vote.
  35. 35. NLRB Proposed RuleProposed Rulemaking under Consideration: Require pre-election hearings to begin no later than seven days after a hearing notice; Requiring the production of a “preliminary” voter list, including names, work location, shift and classification no later than the opening the of the pre- election hearing (rather than after an election has been directed); Deferring voter eligibility issues involving less than 20% of the proposed bargaining unit until after an election; Eliminating pre-election requests for review of Regional Director rulings; Including phone number and email addresses (when available) on the final voter list of employees; Shortening the production of the final voter list to two business days and producing the list in electronic formEffect: Cut timetable from petition to election in half!
  36. 36. Is Union Organizing Going On?Do You See: Employees stop talking as soon as your presence is known. Employees meet and talk in out-of-the-way places. Employees from separate departments or different job levels begin meeting and talking together to a greater extent than before. Employees are absent from customary “social” get-togethers. The nature of employee complaints changes and the frequency increases. Down-to-earth employees develop social consciousness or begin using a strange vocabulary. Good workers begin doing poor work. Poor workers begin doing good work.
  37. 37. Education and Communication Knowledge is power = educate your employees:  Communicate your Employee Relations Philosophy  Explain the significance of signing a union authorization card  Explain effects of a unionized environment  Explain cost of union dues  Lack of one-on-one dialogue on issues  Explain your company’s philosophy on handling employee questions and disputes.
  38. 38. Recognize employees Possible topics:  Recognition of employee achievements – (performance, training, personal)  Promoting operational changes driven by employee suggestions  Wage and benefit comparisons to external information  Safety improvements/reduction in accidents.
  39. 39. Do’s & Don’ts: Supervisor Don’tsRemember: “TIPS”You cannot: Threaten employees Interrogate employees Promise employees anything Spy on employees
  40. 40. Do’s & Don’ts: Supervisor Don’tsRemember: “TIPS”Threats: To close a facility – plant – location To discharge union supporters To discontinue benefits Futility of voting for a union Changes in practice or rules in response to union activity
  41. 41. Do’s & Don’ts: Supervisor Don’tsRemember: “TIPS”Interrogation: Asking how the employee feels about the union Asking if the employee attended a union meeting Polling employees Soliciting grievances
  42. 42. What Supervisors Can’t DoRemember: “TIPS”Promises: Accelerating positive change in wages or benefits Soliciting or remedying grievances Promotions or improved working conditions
  43. 43. What Supervisors Can’t DoRemember: “TIPS”Spy: Photographing/videotaping union activity Following employees to off-site meetings
  44. 44. Do’s & Don’ts: Supervisor Don’tsOther Examples: “If you support the union, you’re fired.” “If a union gets in here, we’ll shut down.” “Have you been approached by a union?” “If you help us remain union- free, we’ll give you a $100 bonus.”
  45. 45. Do’s & Don’ts: Supervisor Do’sRemember: “FOE”You can talk about: Company’s position on unions Your personal experiences with unions The TRUTH about unions The TRUTH about a particular union Union facts.
  46. 46. Do’s & Don’ts: Supervisor Do’sExamples: “That a union could negotiate an agreement with management that may not support your personal beliefs.” “The company believes that a union often creates an adversarial as opposed to a constructive environment for resolving disagreements.”
  47. 47. Do’s & Don’ts: Supervisor Do’sExamples: “Unionized employees have to pay dues that are deducted from their paycheck whether they like it or not.” You are able to give examples of situations regarding union organizing and contract negotiations.
  48. 48. Supervisory Behaviors Personally thank employees for doing a good job Communicate clear expectations Be willing to meet and listen to employees Follow through on agreements and promises Involve employees in decisions Give people a chance to learn new skills Manage by walking around, know what is going on
  49. 49. Thank you for participating in today’s program!Please Click Here to Complete this Sho Toll Free – 877-662-6444
  50. 50. Questions?Employers Association of the NorthEast 3 Convenient Offices: 67 Hunt Street 250 Pomeroy Avenue PO Box 1070 Suite 200 Agawam, MA 01001-6070 Meriden, CT 06450 413-789-6400 203-686-1739 67 Millbrook Street Worcester, MA 01606 508-767-3415 Toll Free – 877-662-6444