- Advertisement -

A good Labour Management Cooperation (LMC) initiative will not succeed if it does not have the support of top-level management and labour representatives. Given their position of authority, discretion and leadership, top-level management and labour representatives must often play the role of catalyst in an LMC initiative, even though the initiative must ultimately have the support and involvement of the whole organization to be successful. As with most leadership challenges, it is paramount that management and labour leaders truly believe in the value of LMC and that they lead by example in humility.  The case of Ghana is referenced in Sections (112) through to (115) of Labour Act 2003(Act 651).

With respect to management side of the equation, on a practical level this means that upper level management must not only support the initiative in word, but it must support it through positive actions such as rewarding cooperative behaviour, rewarding worker generated  innovation, and providing sufficient resources for the initiative. Most importantly, top management must “practice what it preaches,” frequently consulting with and ever yielding decision-making authority to work in appropriate cases.     

This initial component of success – i.e., management’s honest belief in the value of LMC is more challenging than it may seem, requiring a “leap of faith” or “thinking outside the box” on the part of managers who may be long accustomed to the idea that management has all the solutions and all the authority to implement them.

- advertisement -

The idea that workers may have more knowledge about certain aspects of operations or, at a minimum, better access to certain types of information and experience, is simply counter intuitive to many managers who have thought and acted under the other assumption for so long.

On some level, managers may view devolution of decision-making as a threat to their prestige and to their status as managers. Others genuinely do not trust the capacity of subordinates, or may simply be afraid of the unknown consequences of doing so. In each of the above situations, changing the paradigm to accommodate LMC requires a fundamental “leap of faith.”

This is required not just on the part of management; labour representatives must similarly show such a leap since “it takes two to “tango”.

If the top level labour officials do not truly believe in the value of LMC and do not model cooperative behaviour, it is unlikely that the requisite leadership will emerge among the rank and file of workers.

Previous articleWalking in the employer’s shoes
Next articleUK must prepare for fourth industrial revolution
ADR Daily is a specialized news portal with a focus on providing authentic news, information and research analysis on Appropriate Dispute Resolution (ADR), Human Resource Management (HRM) and Industrial Relations Management (IRM) in Ghana and beyond. This platform serves as an information resource base for the progress of the ADR, HRM and IRM industries, and seeks to promote professionalism in ADR practice by supporting a network of ADR professionals within and across nations and continents. ADR Daily keenly encourages the mass adoption of ADR mechanisms, particularly negotiation, mediation and arbitration for the resolution of disputes in all spheres, through the publication of industry news and information, as well as by deploying innovative awareness creation engagements.