The General Secretary of ICU is advocating for Unions to own the vision of their employers in order to avoid an adversarial relationship at the workplace.
Mr Solomon Kotei said that the bedrock for productivity is a harmonious relationship between employers and the workforce as the wellbeing of the employer reflects directly on the employee and it is only when workers claim ownership of the business vision and see themselves as crucial partners that this can be achieved.
Mr Kotei was speaking in an interview with ADR Daily ahead of the National Trade Union Conference.
He said that his message for this year’s conference is that there should be a strong advocacy for a change in the dynamics of trade unionism from an adversarial relationship to the focus on creation of a harmonious employer-worker relationship through partnership.
“The employer’s vision should be the concern of trade union”, he said. This vision he said reflect in the mission statement and must be appreciated by the employee because they are the pillars by which the business operates.
Mr Kotei stated that “until the employee accepts the product of the business, no customer will be interested in the business”.
He noted that for this to be achieved, both employers and the workers will have a role to play. The workers must know the value statement and apply themselves into compliance with the demands of the values of the business, while employers on their part must acknowledge workers as part of the business and put in place systems and policies that will enhance development and increase productivity level of the workers input in the business.
He said there was a need for employers to create forum to listen to concerns of their workers, and also create an environment for workers to contribute innovative ideas that will promote their businesses.
He explained that the type of relationship between employers and unions is the key determinant of the behavior of both parties, and that an adversarial relationship normally comes about when workers feel that they are not appreciated and are discriminated against. The best approach to combat this according to him is for employers also train their staff in recent technologies and promote professional career development.
Mr Kotei entreated unions to appreciate and collectively work with their employers for both parties to achieve the corporate objectives of the business and in so doing realize their own personal expectations of enjoyment of good conditions of service and better remuneration.