The role of unions is to offer democracy in the workplace while focusing on the safety of the employees. The union secures employees’ jobs by creating payment transparency, and salary discrepancies correcting, developing clear terms of promotions and raise, eliminating discrimination, and promoting equity amongst employees (Kurzman, 2021). In unionized organizations, the union act as the mediator between the management and employees to determine suitable policies and resolve disputes. Significant changes have occurred in the last 100 years in the roles of management and unions in society. Unions drastically grew between the 1930s and 1950s but started to decline in the 1960s (Kurzman, 2021). Today, only a small number of organizations are unionized while many others prefer working with management. 20.1% of the salary and employed wage workers were unionized in 1983 but the number is declining to 12.4% in 2008 and 10.5% in 2018 (Kurzman, 2021). Most modern institutions prefer the use of management to develop workplace policies that seek to protect the well-being of employees.
Impact of Union History and CBA on Negotiations and Current Trends
In the United States, labor unions through collective bargaining with employers protect the employees’ interests and rights in the workplace. Unions were started in 1794 when the first trade union was developed to resolve employee strikes in organizations (Kurzman, 2021). The unions also sought to eliminate discrimination against women, immigrants, and blacks from getting high-paying or skilled job opportunities. Labor unions have also contributed to the formation of several labor policies and civil rights legislation.
Today’s negotiation processes whether in labor unions or management are highly protected by policies developed by the unions. Several acts including OSHA, EEOC, and Civil Rights Act for the disabled are applied in today’s negotiation to protect employees from workplace injustices (Kurzman, 2021). The presence of these policies has also influenced the reduced need for unions in organizations. Consequently, labor relations experience challenges and trends such as conflict management, adequate safety in the workplace, annual leave disputes, attendance woes, and career development needs. Accommodating and resolving these trends and challenges creates chaos in labor relations.
Differences between Public and Private labor Negotiation Processes
Negotiations of public organizations differ from those of private because as public unions focus on improving employees’ working conditions, the private union focuses on wages and job security. The negotiating processes in public labor unions are done between the union and the local or state legislators but for private, it is between the union and employer (Wallensteen, 2018). The difference in actors of the bargaining process indicates its legality and the burden of the negotiations.
Compared to the public sector, private sector labor unions operate on a limited budget. Therefore, if the collective bargaining process results in more money for the labor, it reduces the profits of shareholders and organization owners in the private sector (Wallensteen, 2018). When the negotiations result in more funds for the workers, the extra cost is pushed to the taxpayers. Furthermore, services are reduced in the institution because the public institution will cut down the number of workers. Therefore, there are no positive effects of increased labor funding in both private and public sectors.
Understanding of Collective Bargaining Process
By doing this assignment, my understanding of the collective bargaining process has significantly increased. I now understand that the history of a labor union has highly contributed to today’s negotiation in labor relations. The development of unions furthered the urge to improve employees’ working conditions by creating laws. These laws govern both private and public institutions in the protection of employees. I also now understand that either in public or private labor unions, an increase in the labor budget has negative effects.
In unionized organizations, the unions act as mediators and arbitrators of workplace disputes. The value of arbitration is higher than that of mediation because the arbitration process makes the final decision (Wallensteen, 2018). The mediation process allows both the labor and employer to raise their negotiation concerns while the union weighs them based on the existing regulations. However, the arbitration process makes the final decision on the mediated dispute. The union decides the fate of the raised dispute and is solved amicably to retain respect between the employer and workers.
Organizational Leadership Competencies in Negotiating Process
Organizational leadership competencies are highly valuable for a successful negotiating process. Communication and analytical skills enable the bargainers to effectively converse and analyze the problem to find the most effective solution (Pidgeon, 2017). Teamwork and problem-solving skills are critical to working together to resolve workplace disputes. The negotiating team operates under legal and ethical practices to offer a legal and morally upright judgment on the dispute. A strategic approach to the discrepancy is important because using a step-by-step process makes it easy for all participants to understand the negotiation process (Pidgeon, 2017). Doing thorough research before starting a negotiation ensures a base of evidence and information necessary to pursue an opinion. Practicing such leadership skills does not only help find an effective solution but also develops and retains positive dispute resolution for employers and employees. The application of such skills also ensures respect between the employer and employees retain.
Kurzman, P. A. (2021). Labor unions in the United States. In Encyclopedia of social work. Web.
Pidgeon, K. (2017). The keys for success: Leadership core competencies. Journal of Trauma Nursing, 24(6), 338-341. Web.
Wallensteen, P. (2018). Understanding conflict resolution. Sage.