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Ongoing Lonmin and Amcu wage deadlock highlights the importance of this crucial wage negotiating tactic

by , 22 May 2014
Can you believe that the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) has been on a wage strike for 17 weeks?

That's right. The union and the employer (Lonmin) have been unable to reach a settlement and they remain far apart in their positions.

Hopefully, they'll reach a resolution soon now that they're back on the negotiation table.

This strike, which has seen 235 essential services workers being dismissed, has once again cast the spotlight on wage negotiating tactics.

And that's why our experts recommend you use these three tips to fine-tune your negotiating tactics so your company doesn't suffer the same fate.

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Avoid giving your employees a 52% salary increase...

When employees go on strike they'll do anything to get you to meet their demands...

Would you be able to afford to give your employees a 52% salary increase and still be able keep your company?

Find out how you can avoid falling victim to striking employees here.

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Use these three tips to fine-tune your negotiating tactics

Tip 1: Never act in anger inside or outside the negotiation room

Always keep calm. The last thing you want is for the union to accuse you of being unprofessional.

Look at the bigger picture and remember that your goal isn't to beat anyone, but to seek a win-win settlement.

You want a settlement that not only satisfies you and the union, but also allows you to have a good work relationship after the wage talks.

Tip 2: Never walk out of negotiations

The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service says when an adjournment is necessary, don't just walk out. Simply say quietly that you need a ten minute break and will be back at a certain time to continue.

This way, you won't escalate the problem.

Perception is reality in wage negotiations. If you just walk out, the other party could see it as protest action or even disrespect.

'If you handle this badly you could spark a breakdown in negotiations coupled with a wildcat strike,' warns the Loose Leaf Service.

There's one more tip to help you fine tune your wage negotiating tactics

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Everything you need to be 100% legally compliant

Get tips, checklists and advice on how to easily comply with labour law. Click here to find out how.


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Tip 3: Dig beneath the union's hard opening stance to discover the real needs of the workers

Most commentators say there's more to Amcu's strike than wage demands. This means Lonmin has to dig deeper to find a resolution.

That's what you must do as well in your workplace. You must try to find alternatives so employees can get back to work as soon as possible.

We hope these tips will help you fine tune your wage negotiation tactics. After all, June, called 'strike season' in South Africa, is just around the corner.

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