Shopfloor Matters: Labor-Management Relations in Twentieth-Century American Manufacturing

By David Fairris | Go to book overview

6

POSTWAR COLLECTIVE-BARGAINING AGREEMENTS

Shopfloor contractualism was initiated by employers largely through changes in company policy, management structure, and personnel. The system made contract language the exhaustive statement of workers’ rights on the shopfloor, and the formal grievance procedure the primary mechanism for dispute resolution. After only a few years of experience with this contractand-grieve approach to shopfloor governance, workers realized its shortcomings. As shopfloor conditions deteriorated and unresolved grievances mounted, rising worker frustration made for tense labor-management relations.

A case study of collective-bargaining agreements over the postwar period offers useful insights into various features of the system of shopfloor contractualism. Changes in contract language and addenda attached to labor contracts shed light on both the rise of this system of shopfloor governance and the general state of labor-management relations—including, for example, workers’ growing frustration with shopfloor contractualism in the late 1960s. In addition, an extensive study of local agreements over this period reveals the extent to which shopfloor conditions became subject to greater contractual regulation upon the emergence of the contract-andgrieve approach to shopfloor governance. 1

Although most of management’s success at eliminating workers’ fractional bargaining power during the late 1950s and early 1960s can be attributed to changes in company policy, the new “get tough” policy of management is also reflected in changing contract language. One of the changes observed in a number of collective-bargaining agreements during this period relates to management’s efforts to limit the precedent value of workers’ illicit shopfloor gains. Another reflects management’s attempt to eliminate workers’ ability to use shopfloor actions to win improvements in other areas.

In steel, management’s discomfort with existing shopfloor practice became so intense that the failure to reach an agreement with the union on this matter during contract negotiations in 1959 resulted in a strike that halted steel production for 116 days. Management’s primary concern centered around the famous

-139-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Shopfloor Matters: Labor-Management Relations in Twentieth-Century American Manufacturing
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction 1
  • 1 - From Exit to Voice in Shopfloor Governance 17
  • 2 - The Amoskeag Plan of Representation 47
  • 3 - The Rise of an Empowered Shopfloor Voice 57
  • 4 - Labor-Management Disputes in Meat Packing, 1936-41 89
  • 5 - Institutionalization and Decline in Workers’ Shopfloor Power 99
  • 6 - Postwar Collective-Bargaining Agreements 139
  • 7 - Contemporary Experiments with New Systems of Shopfloor Governance 146
  • 8 - A Visit to Saturn 168
  • 9 - The Future of Us Shopfloor Governance 175
  • Appendix Tables 191
  • Data Appendix 198
  • Notes 204
  • Bibliography 219
  • Index 230
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 234

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.