Labor vs. Management & the Media

There’s good reason for thoughtful and strategic consideration of your target audiences prior to dealing with the news media. You should always first identify the groups and/or individuals who are persuadable and can help you achieve your goals. Over time, and with repetition, these audiences can be hugely influential in helping you.

Consider this:

Unions are known for taking their contract differences with management to the media. Their goal is to build empathy for their case and generate pressure on management from beyond the negotiating table to settle on a deal as favorable as possible to workers. So, why doesn’t management do the same? Typically management will either say nothing at all, or issue generic press releases that say nothing, while the union is fanning emotions.

Indeed, management can even out flank labor by getting to the media first and begin building a case. Management needs to think beyond its work site and consider who else has a stake in the final contract. Frequently, that includes the workers’ families. Why shouldn’t they hear the employer’s side of the story? If management has a strong position, or has made a reasonable and fair offer, perhaps some pressure could be applied at home (literally) to get an agreement.

There’s no need to bash the union or its leadership and negotiators. Nor is this a suggestion to negotiate through the media. However, management has the same rights as the unions to make the facts known. Assuming the employer has a strong, worthy position, using the media to leverage that position just might help bring things to a quicker and acceptable conclusion.

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