Psychology 2060 Lecture Notes - Union Representative, Closed Shop, General Union

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Published on 20 Apr 2013
Chapter 13- Unionization
Two reason role of unions:
o They are organizations in own right and create context for unique
forms of organizational behaviour
o Exist in organizations and have demonstrable effect on other
o Relationship between I/O psychologists and labour movement
“mutual neglect”
US 12%, Canada 30%, UK 74% Finland 78%
Canada less than 20% private sector employees belong to unions, over
US unionization low and declining
Newfoundland and Labrador most unionized and Alberrta least
Union: combination of people who are joined together for common cause
Local: brqanch of union in particular workplace
Largest unions in Canada is Canadian Union of Public Employees
Craft unions: Union represent 1 particular occupation
Industrial unions: organizations that represent all workers in an
Collective bargaining: union bargain collectively with management, union
bargins on behalf of all the members represented by union
Collective agreement: agreement reached through contract, legally binding
on employer union and employees
Unionization Process:
Understanding unionizatio requires understanding factors that motivate
individuals to join labour unions
unionization: process through which an individual becomes associated with
a union, beings before individuals enters work force and continues
throughout the span of union involvement
key events in this process: pre-joining, joining the union, committing to and
participating in the union, leaving union
1. Pre-joining
Process of socialization
Parental work experiences affect children
Union attitudes develop through socialization process
Young adults union attitudes predicted by their perceptions of
their parents attitudes toward unions
Hypothesized role of family socialization process development of
union attitudes
Links between parental childrens attitudes are stronger when chil
identifies with parent in question
Family socialization process appear to be a more
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Influence on young workers union attitudes than their own job
attitudes and experiences
2. Joining
Closed shop agreement: collective agreement , union and
management agree all employees in bargaining unit will be union
One becomes union member simply by accepting employment in
unionized firm
Members and employees wishing to prevent unionization both
intensely interested in why individuals would vote for union
during a certification elections
Certification elections: election held to determine whether a
union will be certified as the bargaining agent for a group of
Pro-union attitudes are associated with greater willingness to join
the union and anti union attitudes are associated with a resistance
to union joining
Resolving job dissatisfactions or injustice predictor of union
Perceived costs and benefits of unionization as well as contextual
Unionization is combined result of job dissatisfaction, a belief in
the value of collective action, perception that joining a union
would be instrumental resolving the dissatisfaction (rational
(1)First must be dissatisfaction or frustration
(2)Believe that union will helpful in resolving this dissatisfaction
(3)Positive perception of unions in general
3. Committing to the Union
Many members of a union may be apathetic, or openly hostile
toward the union
Union commitment “binding of an individual to an organization “
Important predictor of union-relevant behaviour
Union commitment comprised four dimension
Union loyalty: affective attachment to and recognition of benefits
of belonging to the union
Responsibility to the union: willingness to take day to day
Willingness to work for the union : dimension of union
commitment reflecting willingness to take special efforts (hold
office serve on committees) on behalf of the union
Belief in unionism: subscale of union commitment reflecting
general attitudes toward unions
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Union commitment is comprised of union loyalty , willingness to
work for the union and responsibility to the union
Union commitment good predictor of union-relevant behaviours
such as participation in the union, an antecedent of militancy
(willingness to take action to support union), and correlate strike
propensity ( willingness to go on strike)
Early socialization experience in union and experiences with
union leadership commitment perceptions of union
instrumentality and general attitudes toward unions
Dual commitment : being commitment to two entities at same
Whether individual could be committed to both union and
employer at same time
One could be both an active union member and loyal
Union and company commitment depended on state of
union-management relations
Union-management relationships were harmonious,
positive, and respectful then employees could be
committed to both union and employers
Quasi-experimental study in US attitudes on 2 union
members, one on strike and one not
Psychological Involvement in the Union: importance of union
activities in ones life, parallel construct of job involvement ,
identification of individual with union activity
Psychological involvement in union was distinct from union
Psychological involvement emerged as better predictor of
stewards industrial relations stress and work-union role
conflict than did union commitment
Concluded that psychological involvement was promising
construct and measure to further the stud of unionmember
4. Participating in the union
Unions explicitly advocate a democratic structure in which every
member has right to influence the affairs of union
If members don’t participate in union activities then union open to
charges of being undemocratic
Types of participation view does not reflect the nature of unions as
representative democracies
Attendance at union meetings only 10%difficult to argue that a
democratic process was followed
Members elected representatives to do work of the unions
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