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WORKERS PARTICIPATION IN MANAGEMENT

Definition According to KEITH DAVIS :- WORKERS PARTICIPATION IN MANAGEMENT


refers to the mental and emotional involvement of a person in a group situation which encourages him to contribute to group goals and share in the responsibility of achieving them.

LEVELS OF PARTICIPATION:Under participative management, workers are associated with the management i.e. decision making process at different levels. The nature of association and the coverage of decisions are different at different levels. Such participation in through the representatives of workers. Normally, the levels of participation are three. These are as noted below: (A) PARTICIPATION AT THE SHOP FLOOR LEVEL (B) PARTICIPTION AT THE PLANT LEVEL. (C) PARTICIPTION AT CORPORATE LEVEL/ENTERPRISE LEVEL

(A)PARTICIPATION AT THE SHOP FLOOR LEVEL:Actual production activity is conducted by workers at the shop floor. Here,
participative management is possible through works committees in which workers elect their representatives. In such matters committee meetings relating to day to day working/functioning at the shop floor level are discussed and joint decisions are taken. Such committees are concerned with following matters: 1. Conditions of work (lightning, ventilation, sanitation etc) and amenities such as drinking water, canteens, medical and health services etc. 2. safety and accident prevention 3. adjustment of festival and national holidays 4. administration of welfare fund, educational and recreational activities 5. promotion of thrift and savings, and 6. Review of decisions arrived in the meetings of works committees.

Regular meetings of works committees enable workers to get their day to day problems solved promptly. For this, meetings of committees should be arranged regularly and constructive decisions should be taken. In India, such committees are not functioning properly at the shop floor level.

(B)PARTICIPATION AT THE PLANT LEVEL:JOINT MANAGEMENT COUNCILS (JMCs) function as consultative agency at the plant level. JMCs are concerned with the activities at the plant level. JMC, equal representation is given to management and workers. The maximum membership of JMC is 12. JMC is necessary where five hundred or more workers are employed. JMC performs functions on the following matters: 1. to deal with matters such as accident prevention at plant level, management of canteens, water, meals, issue and revision of work rules, indiscipline, training, absenteeism and so on. 2. To receive information, to discuss and to give suggestions on production and marketing programmes, methods of production, general economic situation, state of the market and so on. 3. To have consultations with JMC before introducing changes in the modes of production, production schedule, general administration problems and so on. Wages, bonus, individual grievances of workers, personal problems of workers ad matters of collective bargaining are outside the scope of JMCs. The performance of JMCs is not satisfactory in INDIA due to the attitude of workers representatives, trade unions leadership and negative attitude of managers. In 1975, another scheme of participative management was introduced in India. Under this new scheme, at the shop floor levels, SHOP COUNCILS were to be set up and at the plant level, JOINT COUNCILS were to be set up. In 1977, the scheme was extended to public sector units employing 100 or more persons.

(C)PARTICIPATION AT THE CORPORATE LEVEL:This is participative management at the highest level. Here, the board of
directors is the apex body in the administration and decision making at the corporate level. The representatives of workers are taken on the board of

directors. He looks after the protection of interest of workers. This also improves employer-employee relations and ensures higher productivity. The workers representative can play a useful role in safeguarding the interest of workers. He can guide the management on personnel and social functions. He can even suggest the management not to take certain policy decisions and measures that would be unpopular with the employees. Representatives of workers can also suggest to the board, certain schemes which will motivate workers to take more interest in the work and will also prove useful for cordial labor management relations over a longer period. Participation through workers representative on the Board of Directors is, now introduced in many public sectors enterprises and banks. Participative management at the corporate level is not effective in India. This is because for various reasons. The Board, FOR EXAMPLE, deals with variety of subjects and personnel matters does not receive much attention at the board level. The workers representatives on the board are in minority whereas decisions taken in the board are by the majority. The representative of workers on the board have many limitations due to educational background, etc. such director may not be able to play a constructive role