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Ins and Outs of Collective Bargaining

February 2018

“I don't believe in team motivation. I believe in getting a team prepared so it knows it will have the necessary confidence when it steps on a field and be prepared to play a good game.” 

- Tom Landry 

When negotiating collective bargaining agreements, preparation is one of the most important foundational steps to be taken toward successful negotiations; if done properly, it will likely take more time than the negotiations themselves. While negotiating with a union can be smooth in the right circumstances, the township should prepare itself for all the different potential bumps in the road. This presentation will discuss preparing for negotiations, fact finding, mediation, and Act 312 arbitration, while containing legal fees and avoiding unfair labor practice charges against the township. 

Some of the key aspects that will be examined during this presentation include: knowing and understanding your collective bargaining agreement front to back; knowing and understanding your audience before starting; researching and knowing the market data and comparables; understanding your township’s financial position; strategizing your communications; building the proper negotiating team; understanding that negotiations are a give and take process; using package proposals versus issue bargaining; and knowing what issues the union will likely advance. Last, if both parties become stuck during the process, how will your team maneuver through mediation and fact finding or Act 312 arbitrations?

In preparing and strategizing through the entire bargaining process, this presentation will provide a practical guideline to the Ins and Outs of Collective Bargaining along with providing some helpful tips to having a successful negotiation process.

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