Department of Labor insists on strong employee-employer relations for industrial peace – The Island


by Sanath Nanayakkare

In the past, the visit and scrutiny of business establishments by Department of Labor inspectors was perceived as a “scoop”, and now is the time to break with this perception and promote a mutual understanding between employers and employees on the direction that industrial relations should go beyond existing labor laws, the Labor Department said Tuesday.

It is worth thinking about the combined contribution of employers and employees, as there are many reasons for developing good industrial relations and creating a great workplace to dramatically improve employee job prospects and prospects. of employer income, they said.

WP Nimal Weerasinghe, Labor Officer, Human Resources Development Division, Ministry of Labour, made the comments on Tuesday during an awareness session titled “Social Dialogue and Cooperation in the Workplace”, organized by the Chamber Academy of Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.

“Human resources are an asset and not a liability for any institution and employers and employees should have positive attitudes towards each other to promote industrial peace and create a win-win situation for both parties without hand -work become a headache for the establishment,” he said.

Addressing the audience made up of executives from various companies represented by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, the labor relations and labor dispute resolution expert further said:

“There should be no disconnect between employers and employees. However, when workers fight for their rights, they can decide to strike. And the employers could decide to close the establishment to prevent strikes from occurring on the premises. Such a situation could lead to a stoppage of production or service and have negative consequences for both employers and employees.

“Frederick Taylor (1856 -1915) best known for his principles of scientific management, said, “Workers are naturally lazy, due to a variety of reasons for being unmotivated and finding work boring. So assign them work, guide them, help them, encourage them and make them do the work.

“In contrast, Elton Mayo (1880 – 1949), industrial researcher and organizational theorist, said, “Managers can increase productivity by trusting employees to work independently with the least amount of supervision. As managers, I would like to ask you how do you perceive these two points of view? If you give the workers freedom, will they do the job expected of them? Do they need to be consistently managed and supervised? Managers should let conscientious workers work independently and indifferent workers work under supervision. But you might have a problem if you try to supervise conscientious workers and let indifferent workers work independently. In this context, the Department of Labor wishes to place the more neutral Japanese 5S methodology between these two theories. According to the Japanese 5S, a good manager is invisible because he not only leads but also works with his team to achieve set goals and targets. So you need to be able to distinguish these characteristics in the workplace and produce the best results for your employers, your employees and your organization. Managers must play a hybrid role of decision maker and employee. So you have to find the right balance between these very difficult dynamics. If you achieve this, your workforce will not become a headache, but will become a real asset to your organization.

GWN Viraji, Commissioner of Labour, said employees and employers should not be swayed by emotions when dealing with an industrial issue.

“You have to look at the other person’s point of view with empathy. You need to listen to each other and cooperate to solve problems together and move forward.

She emphasized that both parties should honestly consider who really caused the problem on the basis that “sometimes you are the problem” and acknowledge your commitments and responsibilities without blaming the other. »

PASC Pathiraja, Deputy Commissioner of Labor also made a presentation during the webinar and addressed many of the attendees’ concerns regarding industrial issues during the Q&A.

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