Trade Unioins and Injustice LO7053

William J. Hobler, Jr. (
Mon, 29 Apr 1996 19:55:27 -0400

Replying to LO6992 --


There are some very encouraging interactions between business and trade
unions. The US Auto Industry is one in which unions are sharing in the
decisions and in the profits.

The conventional wisdom in the US is that Unions are bad for business, and
I think that the record is mixed. The record in Europe is also mixed. In
the US unions were formed to right some true inhuman treatment of
Americans by business. These inhumanities still exist, particularly in
immigrant communities.

Similarly some of the rules imposed by unions are ludicrous. The most
important jobs requiring the greatest skills are to be given to the union
member with most seniority, despite there being people with greater skill.

In Europe, several recent articles report, the socialist rules imposed by
unions have priced the industry out of international competition. The
result is that several European auto makers are building, or have built
manufacturing plants here in the US, and in states that are not
particularly friendly to unions.

Whenever I try to help a business to change I ask whether unions are
involved. If so I go through stakeholder analysis and ask whether or not
unions are to be involved in the change. If not I go through the multiple
question, why not? After all, union members have a stake in the success
of the company, their jobs. I have been unsuccessful in getting unions
invited into changing a business.

Sorry about that.


Reflection without action is sloth, Action without reflection is busyness Both are useless - think - do it

Bill Hobler "William J. Hobler, Jr." <>

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