Boulwarism (Negotiations) - Explained
What is Boulwarism?
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What is Boulwarism?
Boulwarism refers to a negotiating tactic invented by Lemuel Boulware, the former vice president of General Electrics. The term is also commonly referred to as Take-it or Leave-it.
How do Take it or Leave it Offers Work?
In labor union negotiations, boulwarism refers to an ultimate offer that does not permit any further revisions.
Before an offer is made, the initiating (offering) party checks all the relevant details pertaining to the labor dispute including competitors policy on similar issue and industry standards.
Boulware asserted that the position would be locked in, and no modification would be done except if new considerations or facts were raised.
Events like a strike are not considered factors that can result in the changing of rational solution previously proposed.
Boulwarism is part of a larger campaign that was formulated to undermine the authority and persuasiveness of the union leadership.
Its investor, Boulware proposed that the concept was a comprehensive path of training and education whereby the employer would try to convince both sides not to engage in conducts that would be against their own interests.
Thus, boulwarism is the alternative of traditional collective bargaining.
The National Labor Relations Board found boulwarism and other associated tactics to be unfair labor practices that violate both the National Labor Relations Act and the Wagner Act.
The board argued that such acts breach the duty to bargain in good faith, bypassing the Union and appealing directly to the union membership.