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Just what's behind this increase in lockouts?
Shar, if the Unions would step into the year 2012 (from the 1930's) you would find that unions should evolve, change and become part of the solution. The Unions have far too much political clout and get an inordinate amount of media when you consider that they only represent 11 or 12 % of workers. Help us succeed in the global economy.
I think I know the answer: Greed.
Unions were originally formed to deal with unsafe work places (like elmore1 's reference to the 1930's). Times have long since changed. Unions then recognized the ability to use unification as a wage bargaining chip. In some cases this may have made sense when resource compensation was out of balance in the value chain relative to value delivered to the business. The problem with unions is that they don't help the flow of value to the labor resources delivering the value. It gets spread out to everyone - even the laggards who are unproductive and don't deserve the higher pay levels. This destroys incentive and both laborer and employer are inefficient. Pro athlete unions make no sense to me. These people are getting paid a lot of money to play a game. It's not work. As much as they may like to portray it as such, it isn't work! Even a low paid NHL player makes a very good six figure income. How is that unfair given what they do? There's no comparable job where they could make the same income with same amenities. It's absurd. Lockouts are just an extension of a business case analysis. The net present value of the future concessions is worth more than today's foregone revenue, income, or higher expenses.
Lock outs are not the employers choice. They are forced to take this action because the greed of the unions and employees.
So...if I following the comments here, people think that making sure the general worker needs to make concessions in this difficult economic climate, but executive salaries can increase 30-50% and it's no problem?
The article said that the guy running Crystal Sugar had a 52% increase in his already above average lifetime earnings for most Americans with his annual compensation package for the last three years. So how does this translate into the "greed of unions and employees". Especially Crystal Sugar employees who have been on strike for 16 months and are not eligible for unemployment benefits. Lockouts are the employer's best choice. They hire cheaper workers, don't have to pay unemployment benefits for the strikers, they bust the union so it is no longer a union shop and that means they can pay bottom of the barrel wages, require mandatory overtime 24/7, classify everyone as part-time so they don't have to pay benefits, or 1.5 time over 40 hours, nix the holiday pay, stop retirees' benefits, quit paying into pensions, and on and on abuse labor so one greedy man can take home 52% more money for him selfish self. The farmers should have raised holy hades when the CEO started robbing the company blind.
Sure unions do need to step into the modern age, and I think if they can we should support an uptick in union support. Some companies like Starbucks, Trader Joe's, and Whole Foods are adamant against unions, but appear to reward their employees well considering the job. Workers have rights, and they deserve a strong cut of the profits. The recent uptick in lockouts seems to be more skewed towards managements not willing to share the profits. If it weren't for dedicated employees, management would have nothing. On the contrary I don't know of many managements that couldn't be easily replaced. Most upper managers I've worked with recently don't even understand what they're responsible for - they've just got their paper MBA and some knowledge of finance.
1300 skilled,highly trained workers-duhh,must have been really tough to find replacements(yahh sure,you betcha)
elmore1 - Shar, if the Unions would step into the year 2012 (from the 1930's) you would find that unions should evolve, change and become part of the solution. ---------- If unions were to step into your idea of 2012, we'd be stepping into the 1920's.
Managers and owners forget that they would have NOTHING without their workers. A bright inventor can invent and patent something, but without employees, he'll never move past the garage hobbyist level. I wonder if this new imperial attitude on the part of managers is due to their being two or three generations removed from the shop floor and not really seeing the workers as human beings but as interchangeable cogs in the corporate machine or as an "unnecessary expense."
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