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Collective Bargaining: Unions, Boulwarism, and Negotiations

Question 1
What are four identifying principles of Boulwarism? What are the reasons for its success and failures during the years from 1940 to 1970?

Question 2
What are five methods to avoid a crisis situation in contract negotiations? Explain in what stage they are best utilized.

Question 3
What are challenges that multi-national corporations pose to unions? Why do some foreign countries present greater roadblocks to "one big global union" than others, explain?

Question 4
How does the threat of a strike (or actual strike) affect the negotiating process and its tendency to bring about conditions necessary for agreement by union and management?

Solution Preview

Question 1
What are four identifying principles of Boulwarism? What are the reasons for its success and failures during the years from 1940 to 1970?

Identifying principles of Boulwarism include "studying employees' concerns, correcting easily fixable problems, and improving communicate to between management and employees" (Weir, 2013). The most famous principle of Boulwarism is the "final and best offer" strategy, in which management studied the situation and determined the best way to respond. The offer was presented near the end of negotiation, and with the understanding that the company was prepared to accept a strike if the offer was not accepted. The company then refused to modify the author in any way. This was done by Lemule Boulware at GE. These tactics were successful because the Congress of Industrial Organizations had just expelled the UE for "alleged communist influence", and was being challenged by a rival labor group. These conditions plus the strength of GE's position increased the success of the negotiating style. Another reason for the success of this method was the fragmented unions during this time. Other companies adopted the practices until 1964 when "the National Labor Relations Board ruled that Boulwarism constituted an unfair labor practice and outlawed the practice of refusing to negotiate" (Weir, 2013). While some impacts of Boulwarism were still evident after this time, it became difficult to prove that the "final and best offer" was the result of negotiation. Unions also worked to coordinate their efforts more, thus becoming more powerful.

Sloane, A. A., & Witney, F. (2010). Labor relations (13th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Weir, R.E. (2013). Workers in America: A Historical Encyclopedia. pp. 78-79. Retrieved from http://books.google.com/books?id=PnJ7PmAyi_MC&dq=principles+of+boulwarism&source=gbs_navlinks_s

Question 2
What are five methods to avoid a crisis situation in contract negotiations? Explain in what stage they are best utilized.
In order to avoid a crisis situation in contract negotiations, it is important to begin contract negotiations in good faith and ...

Solution Summary

This detailed solution identifies the four principles of Boulwarism, five methods to avoid a crisis situation in contract negotiations, challenges multi-national corporations pose to unions, and how threat of strike impacts contract negotiations. Includes APA formatted references.

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