The old salary negotiation mindset has to change
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Most often management and unions get entangled in protracted salary negotiations in a manner that sometimes becomes unproductive.

The negotiations sometimes reach a deadlock when both sides of management and union take entrenched positions and fail to compromise.

Some salary negotiations take about three months to conclude. And during that period both sides deploy all forms of tactics and negotiation skills.

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Prolonged negotiation is often as a result of mistrust between management and the workers.

But in the era of labour-management cooperation, salary negotiation can be concluded in a day once management and labour agree to partner for the progress of their enterprise.

The prolonged acrimonious negotiation can be avoided through simple measures that serve as a change agent for enhanced management-workers relations.

These tips ensure that the workers become fully aware of the operational and financial status of the enterprise to inform their demands at negotiations.

Building trust

To be able to build trust and secure the confidence of workers, management has to be transparent in its dealings with workers.

Workers by nature are suspicious of management, and therefore, the onus lies on management to break that jinx of suspicion by acting in a manner that would engender trust.


Management has to be open to workers’ union regarding the financial position of the enterprise. The benefits of transparency come in multiple folds.

First, it helps workers to know their operational and financial position of their organisations and encourages them to contribute more to improve its fortunes.

Secondly, they become more empowered as part owners of the enterprise.

Thirdly, once workers, especially union members are fully aware of the financial position and the part of the profit that could be disposed of, they would be limited in their demand for a salary increase.

In view of this, management and workers need to negotiate rather than bargain. This is because negotiation is a more proactive engagement between management and workers and helps to achieve the right results to promote both the welfare of the workers and the progress of the organisation.

The secret in achieving a speedy salary negotiation is a commitment that requires the will of management and the appreciation of local unions.

It requires openness, leadership and industrial democracy.

By Nii Adotey/

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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.