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The Employment Relationship and the Expression of Conflicting Interests - Literature review Example

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In the paper, different manifestations of conflicting interests between employers and employees are accounted for including the ways to reduce the level of conflict between them. The personal viewpoint is included with a recent example of interest conflict between employee and employer…
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The Employment Relationship and the Expression of Conflicting Interests
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Download file to see previous pages The employment relationship comprises of both cooperation and conflict between employer and employee. The incentive for cooperation is based on the combined contribution of labor and capital that is essential for the production of goods and services in order to secure economic progress, whilst the incentive for conflict is grounded on the differences between management and labor over their perspective responsibilities and roles in the production of the goods and services and also in the distribution of the economic returns obtained therefrom (Lewin 2001). A number of Human Resource (HR) scholars and practitioners have put their attention on numerous overt manifestations of employment relationship conflict such as job satisfaction and low productivity, high turnover and high absenteeism. Moreover, HR specialists have also highlighted the covert employment relationship conflict through their analysis of informal work groups (among management personnel and employees), decision-making networks and organizational culture.
In this regard, Taylor (1911) contended that management-worker conflict was largely contributed by poorly designed jobs and the presence of differences over the distribution of economic returns from a relatively low level of a productive outcome. But, it was also the case that workers were increasingly chaffed under the framework of work system required them staunchly to follow the commands and orders of the supervisors and that emboldened management to tighten (or threaten to tighten) standard work times at its own will. Furthermore, this work system considered workers as un-dimensional.
In order to overcome this narrow concept of the worker and to deal with growing worker dissatisfaction with the framework of scientific management, the pioneers of the human relations movement directed employers’ attention towards workers’ social needs and to the significance of the informal workgroup (Roethlisberger & Dickson 1939). The notion that worker needs should be properly and systematically assessed in order to decrease conflict, improve management, and shape HR programs and practices took stronghold among employers particularly in the second half of the 20th century. In 1955, IBM directed an employee opinion survey that was annually administered to rotating samples of the company’s employees and this process still continues in a number of multi-national firms globally. In such companies, senior management typically required lower and middle management to ‘feedback’ major findings from the surveys to employees, appropriately manage the employee queries about intended management actions grounded on survey findings, and assist senior management with reports about actions taken in conjunction with their own annual performance appraisals. In addition, some firms implemented specific employee satisfaction or morale score as new operating HR objectives. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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