Notes On Workers Participation In Management (WPM):

       Participation means act of taking part. It may be defined as taking part in a sharing of power and status between manager and worker.

Defined by Keith Davis:

       In the words of Keith Davis, "It is a mental and emotional involvement of a person in a group situation which encourages him to contribute to goals and share responsibilities with him."

       Thus, according to Davis participation in management has three important ideas:

  1. Participation means mental and emotional involvement rather than merely physical activity.
  2. Participation motivates a person to make his own contribution towards the good of the organisation.
  3. Participation encourages a person to accept responsibility in group activities. Japan, Germany, U.K; U.S.A. and such other countries have encouraged to participate in quality improvement India has imported this idea recently.
Forms/Ways/Methods of W.P.M:

       The forms and level of participation differs from situation to situation in the same organisation.

1. Works committee:

       According to the Industrial Dispute Act 1947, every co employing 100 or more workers are required to establish a works committee. Its main aim is to provide measures for securing and maintaining good relations between employer and employee.

2. Joint Management councils:

       Joint Management councils are set up by the representatives of workers and employers. The matters which are generally discussed at J M C are prevention of accidents, Management of canteens, minimization of waste of time, indiscipline etc. The decision of the J.M.C. is purely of advisory nature.

       J M C may be formed at plant level and shop level. At plant level, it is called plant council and at shop level, shop council.

3. Workers participation on Board:

       This system ensures full fudged participation of workers in the mgt. One or two representatives of workers are nominated or elected on the Board of Directors.

       In India, it was introduced by the Nationalized Bank Management and miscellaneous provision scheme 1970.

4. Workers Participation in share capital:

       This is also known as co partnership. Under this, workers are allowed to purchase shares of the co for which they are working. They become part owner of the co and take part in the internal matters of the company as shareholders.

5. Suggestion scheme:

       It is one of the ways of encouraging workers interest. Under this, suggestions are invited from the workers to improve the methods of workings of the concern. Suitable rewards also paid to the workers whose suggestions proves useful.

       It was first introduced by D C M and Dalmia group.

Importance of Participative Management:

       The importance of participative management is as follows:

  1. It prevents exploitations by owners or by mgt.
  2. It helps to achieve job security, better wages etc.
  3. It brings industrial peace by minimizing industrial disputes.
  4. For trade unions it is a means of extending their influence and power.
  5. It brings about higher production through increased productivity.
  6. It cuts down the rivalry mood between employer and employee.
  7. It cuts down the concept of worker as a commodity and treats them as important part of enterprise.
Obstacles of Workers Participation In Management(WPM):

       The factors responsible for the failure of participative mgt are:

1) Ideological difference:

       The employers are of the opinion that workers participation at the Board should be gradually introduced while the employees feel that they should be simultaneously introduced at all level Thus, there is an ideological difference

2) Multiplicity of participating bodies:

       Existence of no of joint bodies like works committee, J M C have often created confusion and duplication of effort and resulted in waste of time and energy.

3) Lack of strong Trade union:

       In our country, the trade union movement is fragmented, poorly organised and colored by various political philosophies. In such situation, it is futile to think of effective W. P. M.

4) Illiteracy:

       Workers in India are by and large illiterate. It the absence of adequate knowledge they are unable to participate meaning fully in the schemes.

5) Unhappy Industrial Relation:

       The industrial relation in our country is not free from labour unrest. Workers participation in such situation cannot become effective.

6) Delay in implementing decisions:

       One of the major handicaps of participation is delays in implementing decisions arrived at by participative bodies. This often generates dissatisfaction and frustration among the workers.

Suggestions/ Requisites/ ways to overcome the participation:

      Though participation has taken roots in some of the enterprises, its overall progress has not been satisfactory. Therefore, steps should be taken to make the scheme effective.

  1. The work environment must be made congenial enough to motivate the worker to give whole hearted cooperation.
  2. The initiative of participation must come from both mgt and workers.
  3. Both mgt and workers must have good faith upon the system.
  4. The concept of W. P. M. must be given wide publicity so that the idea of participation may take roots in the mind of those who are to implement the scheme.
  5. The system of participation must be complementary to the collective bargaining process.
  6. The participation scheme must be based on mutual trust and confidence.
  7. The trade union movement should be developed on sound lines.
  8. There must be a free flow of informations between labour and mgt throughout the enterprise.