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Dessler, G. (2017). Human Resource Management, 5th Ed. Pearson Education, New York.

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Chapter 14 and 15


8- Substantive post- 75-100 words each

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Discussion 1

  1. Assess whether unions are still relevant today.

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  1. Based on personal experience, labor unions are still relevant. However, there seems to be a change in their overall effectiveness and there have been a lot of changes to laws that affect their membership. As a teacher, I am part of a union. I have mixed feelings about it, as being a part of the union was almost not even a choice. For the longest time, when you were a teacher you were part of the union, but you could make the decision not to participate. However, since the contracts were collectively bargained a portion of earnings would still go to the union. The percentage that still went to the unions was enough to make opting out barely worthwhile.


It was not until recently when the Janus v. AFSCME ruling was made that stated non-union workers did not have to contribute anything at all. He said that the fees infringed on his First Amendment rights, and that, in the case of public employees whose contract negotiations are with the government, the fees were a form of political advocacy (Higgins, 2018). In short, unions would back political candidates that were union friendly, which is unfair to employees with dissenting opinions or with different political affiliations. This is a huge blow to unions, as now employees do not have to participate at all. With that in mind, my paychecks over the course of the year would be roughly $1200. It is not a terrible amount of money to lose, but to some it may be financially significant and others may just be happy to not support an oppositional party. Respond?

  1. I would say that yes Unions are still relevant today, but I would also agree with Nick that they are losing some of their effectiveness. Collective bargaining agreements help employees have a voice and get better benefits such as wage increases, better healthcare and better working hours. The Union helps employees to understand what they can and can’t bargain for and what they will likely be able to change and also help them through the process. Personally, I don’t think that the union at my place of work does the employees a whole lot of good. They pay pretty high dues and get the same benefits of the employees that choose not to join the union. They help when incidents occur and give representation for both kinds of employees whether they pay into the union or not. Of course the representation wouldn’t be there for either one if the 70% didn’t pay their dues. Respond?



Discussion 2

  1. Determine the trade-off between good employee relations and profitability.


  1. If a company is focused only on profit then it will not invest in its’ stakeholders. If they are looking only at hard evidence then it becomes harder to put a price or savings on employee relations. It is however easy to notice differences in employee morale, satisfaction, an d productivity. Happy employees are less likely to leave a company and relationships that have been built on a solid foundation will pave the way for loyal employees that care about their jobs. If a company treats its employees with compassion and fairness, they will see higher retention rates and future productivity. It costs a lot of money to hire new employees because of training which is often not accounted for when talking profits. So I would say there isn’t much of a trade off. Caring about your employees will actually support profit, it is just difficult to quantify. Respond?



  1. If an employer group is not having good employee relations then it could cause a company to not be as profitable. This is a hard one to argue on because obviously Walmart is on the news regularly because they offer low prices, pay lower wages, and at times have no so great employee relations. Raising wages, then cutting hours hit the news back in in 2015 (Worstoll 2015). I think it is crazy when you walk into Walmart and you can see a lot of the behind the scenes while shopping. I do not want to repeat some things I have heard between employees and supervisors. It should happen behind closed doors, not in public. If you have good open communication with the employee that is not mean, negative, or bullying then people will come to work anxious to share ideas. Employees will not call in sick to work if they are motivated to come to work and happy (Dessler 2017 pg 453). I still shop at Walmart though because it is cost effective for me, and they have changed this year by having less lines, and technical services to compete with Amazon. Respond?


Discussion 3

Review this week’s course materials and learning activities, and reflect on your learning so far this week

  1. Provide citation and reference to the material(s) you discuss. Describe what you found interesting regarding this topic, and why.

Describe how you will apply that learning in your daily life, including your work life.

Describe what may be unclear to you, and what you would like to learn.

  1. When going through the reading, I found the steps to unionize as interesting. Dessler (2017) listed 5 steps which include initial contact, obtaining authorization cards, holding a hearing, campaigning, and then having an election. I was not sure of the process as the role that I am in now was already unionized. However, in a previous position in sales we were not unionized, and I believe the company was definitely anti-union. From what I was told, shortly before I arrived the building housed many different departments, but the customer service floor and their jobs were all moved out. Apparently there was some talk about unionizing from that department, and the contact had already taken place. It was not long before the company decided to open a customer service call center in South Carolina, adequately far away from New York, and offering severance or a change to relocate. Once that move had taken place, apparently all talks of unionizing died off for fear of losing jobs or being relocated.

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