Worker directors

In order for any employee to work hard there is one thing that every employee needs. If we were to look at any theory linked with business then we would find the answer. It is of course the need for motivation good relations would increase employee motivation at Blacks as workers will be motivated to work for Blacks as motivation would show that Blacks values its employees and includes their views in the decision making process. By using the strategy of motivation at Blacks not only will employees do the work that they have been set but when approaching customers who are the most important people for Blacks they will do so wanting to help and serve them willingly.

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From motivation we are led to the next benefit of good relations for employees. This is greater employee commitment. This is one of the reasons that Outdoors (the company Blacks took over) was failing. It was written in our weekly fact sheet that due to the lack of commitment from both managers and workers at Outdoors they had many problems with absenteeism and being short-staffed. Absenteeism within any organisation can create a major problem if resulting to lack of staff. This is why commitment is needed and is essential to Blacks. They need workers to want to come into work and focus on the job at hand. Employees would be working hard for employers and the relationship between both would be sound, greater benefiting Blacks. Another reason the workers will feel motivated for work for Blacks is if their views are heard to and considered.

If employees at Blacks are both motivated and committed to the job then there surely is a state or level they have reached, which Malsow states in his hierarchy. This is the level of greater job satisfaction. Employees would benefit from motivation and commitment giving them job satisfaction. I can personally say working at Blacks that the workers an I enjoy our work and we enjoy working as a team and we do not just focus on the 28th of each month, when we get paid (unless we really need money), but also on the non-financial rewards such as knowing we beat our targets for the week together. Also because the labour turnover is low at Blacks, it shows that more and more workers have reached job satisfaction it shows that they really are keen to work hard.

If workers get along with their managers and are working hard, then they will be praised regularly by managers for the good work they do, which boosts their confidence and morale and help them continue to work hard. Once they have confidence, the workers morale level will be high which then will help them to achieve their daily targets and the more regularly he/she meets the targets, the more motivated they will become as they can develop a personal good reputation within the workforce and be known as a reliable employee who always reaches their targets.

As there are good working relationships at Blacks, there is a better chance that workers will get praised for their good work, which will then give them a morale boost. This will benefit both the employer and employee because the manager can trust the worker to carry out the work set and the worker can feel needed by the store.  As employees have good relations with the employers, they can also develop their own communicational skills and be more open to the employers. So if the employee feels troubled, he/she will not hesitate to ask the employer for help. It will make the worker feel wanted and supported during their time at Blacks.

If at Blacks we find that employees are motivated, committed and have reached a state of job satisfaction then there is another benefit that they can gain. This benefit is both related to employees and employers at Blacks. Specifically for employees though if they are happy at work then there will be a reduced amount or no trade union intervention. This would mean that they would not have any direct problems at work involving a range of factors. These factors could include problems with pay or bad working conditions, or long shifts with not enough breaks. Since working at Blacks I have not witnessed such a thing involving trade unions but rather I have seen an increase in pay and better working conditions provided through staff associations without trade unions being involved. This has benefited the employees as they have not gone on strike and taken unpaid days off. This would also benefit employers as strikes have not been carried out, which could produce chaos for Blacks as a whole.

What does exist at Blacks is staff association whereby various Blacks stores have joined together to go on excursions for a day and bring along their families. I have seen this take place on various occasions. Most recently after Christmas had passed due to the fact it was our best Christmas yet in terms of sales, all the managers and staff from the Harrow, Ealing and Brent Cross branch were invited on a day out to Alton Towers theme park and we were welcome to bring along family. Using this method not only did we get to know workers from other branches but relationships with managers and co-workers were improved helping us to have an enhanced work force.

These are the main benefits for employees at Blacks which could also be summarised. Employees would enjoy increased motivation, be committed to the work set, they would reach a state of job satisfaction and there would not be a need for trade union intervention. Benefits to Blacks as an organisation by using various measures to ensure good employer-employee relations are fluent The benefits they could receive are beneficial to Blacks as they are still fairly new in the market and need to increase their market share. However, are there any steps or measures that employers could take to ensure that good employer – employee relations are fluent at Blacks? There certainly are, so let us look at these measures they could take.

Profit sharing:- Employees can be involved in profit sharing schemes, i.e. sharing ownership. Blacks offer a new scheme to all employees who have worked at Blacks for three years. They offer staff the opportunity to buy company shares through Abbey National also providing a savings account with high rates. Monthly bonuses are also offered providing sales targets are met on a weekly basis. This will motivate the workforce and give them incentives to reach targets set.

Joint consultative meetings:- This could involve regular meetings between trade unions and employer representative. However as stated earlier none of the staff at Blacks are part of trade unions but rather they have a staff association group who are represented in the form of area managers. The area managers are invited to meetings to represent the workers and discuss issues with the employers. If this relationship is healthy and agreements are made, there will be less conflict within the organisation.

Worker directors:- Workers are invited to sit on the board of director and represent the views of their particular teams to management. Workers are also invited to take part in the decision making process. This of course is applied at Blacks and can be said to be a form of motivation as staff know that their views are important to the directors and ultimately they know that they themselves are important to Blacks as a whole. Workers can openly express themselves and feel that their opinions are valued when it comes down to decision-making so a stronger relationship can be attained.