The labor unions today play a different role from the past.
In the past, the labor unions aim to fight for better benefits for the workers. They arrange for the workers to go on strike in order to achieve their aim.
However, this attitude of labor unions resulted in the exodus of jobs from developed countries to developing countries. The opening of China economy does not help in this matter.
As a result of mass exodus of jobs due to the unyielding attitude of the labor unions, many workers started to question the wisdom of joining labor unions today.
A low paying job isstill better than no job. That is the attitude of the trade unions today. That is also the attitude of the workers today.
The trade unions today recognize that job protection is their aim duty. Fighting for benefits when the company is already bleeding money is suicide.
Many companies decide to close the plants and move the production to other countries. They do not want to deal with unyielding labor unions.
That is why the labor unions today change the approach from fighting for more pay to job protection.
They are willing to convince workers to accept lower salary, cut fringe benefits in order to help the company weather the economic downturn.
The French Labor Federation, a labor union in France, is one example of the labor unions today. The French Labor Federation supports the workers in GM to forgo the annual bonuses, forgo the salary increment for the next three years, and forgo the six days of vacation.
The French Labor Federation supports the reduction of workforce through earlyretirement.
The purpose is to stop the management of GM from moving the jobs from France to other countries.
The French workers enjoy a very high salary on top of generous fringe benefits compare to workers from low cost countries.
Labor unions today have to look at the wider economy. They have to look at the trend in global economy. While the workers in China and other low cost countries dare to fight for 30% salary increment, the workers in developed countries cannot afford to do so.
Even then, the labor union in China dare not support the workers to fight for more salary. They are aware of the ripple effect of supporting the workers to go on strike.
The labor unions today have to convince the workers to take the lesser salary. The labor unions today have to help the management to cut costs.
The labor unions today have to learn to see things from both the management and workers point of views. The labor unions today have to learn to provide solutions instead of demand for unrealistic salary expectation and benefits.
Scheng1 is a passionate blogger from Singapore. Rich in every sense reveals my deep desire in enjoying life, and be rich in every possible ways.