Review and Reflection: A Half Century of Labor Relations

Review and Reflection: A Half Century of Labor Relations

Review and Reflection: A Half Century of Labor Relations

Review and Reflection: A Half Century of Labor Relations

Excerpt

I swore I would never write a book; but here I am!

This is not an autobiography. It is not a chronology, nor by any means a full history of labor relations of the past few decades. It is an attempt to put on paper some of my experiences and observations over the years, along with a bit of philosophy, in the hope these may prove a contribution to the development of better employer-employee relations or, as I prefer to call them, human relations. Always there is the hope that past mistakes need not be repeated in the future.

Timing is a thing that always has impressed me as being very important. The Scriptures tell us there is a time for everything. Often, good proposals and good ideas fail because of poor timing. A good idea advanced at the wrong time may prove as much of a failure as a bad idea. Over the years we note that certain new ways of getting along together are rejected as presenting insurmountable problems, only to be accepted later as a matter of course. It takes time for people to become accustomed to new things, and that is particularly true of human relations.

In this book I try to emphasize the point that many of our difficulties come about because of emotionalism. When we allow our emotions to guide us there usually are produced only headaches and heartaches that prevent us from reaching the objectives we seek. The development of sound labor relations in the United States many times has been stunted by emotional outbursts and actions which, in retrospect, seem futile.

Labor and industry in the first half of this century have learned many things. Some of them came the hard way. But we have made progress toward development of an accord that will promote the best interests of all of us. As for what will happen in the future, I am an optimist. I would just like to point out a Biblical quotation which, to me, seems appropriate: "Wisdom is the important thing; therefore, get wisdom, but with all thy getting, get understanding. . . ."

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