In part 1 of this series, the author traced the background antecedents to the poor management of Ghana’s professional legal education and compared its training to those of other jurisdictions hence shot down the poor management of Ghana’s professional legal education. In the spirit of lawpreneurship, the author enumerated on one (1) of the five (5) lawpreneurial pursuits i.e. insurance claim management for pursuance by LLB holders who do not have the opportunity of pursuing the professional legal practice certification.
The five (5) lawpreneurial pursuits are:
- Insurance claim management
- Property management
- Trade representative management
- Intellectual property management
- Labour issues management
Having dealt with the first pursuit in part 1 of this series, I quickly progressed to make a business sense of property management as the second pursuit in part 2 part of this series. I highlighted the fact that property management firms do not necessarily have to own their own properties; rather they can secure management agreement with landlords and then look for tenants to occupy the property and manage their stay.
Also, the profitability level of a property management firm is dependent on the ability of potential tenants to be able to maintain the property to make business sense for the landlord and the management firm by paying their rents promptly and at market rate, and also taking good care of the property by not incurring the management firm high cost avoidable maintenance. I alluded to another fact that, landlords must give property management firms a good room for discretionary powers to enables the firms operate at some level of certainty and with freehand.
Furthermore, a good communication skill is paramount to business success. The LLB education aptly equips students with good communication skills. This skill must be brought to bear on their lawpreneurship engagements. I maintain that the LLB qualification is a good enough qualification to earn holders a decent economic life if at least they apply the same level of educational seriousness in the world of work.
In part 3 of this series, I discussed the needed collaborative trade partnership needed for mutual benefits for parties in trade agreement. I further touched on the procedural aspects of intellectual property management in a question and answer approach.
In part 4 of this series I touched on intellectual property management. I placed the burning issues between “the hammer and the anvil” and gave it a fine shape which if adhered to will leapfrog the intellectual property management of Ghanaians in Ghana and abroad.
In these final parts of the series, I will discuss in detail the necessary management techniques required by an LLB holder to operate labour management firm. In doing justice to this subject, I will use a conceptual framework known as the ADDY CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK FOR LABOUR MANAGEMENT.
ADDY’S CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK FOR LABOUR MANAGEMENT, 2019.
The column “A” represents the “Actors” of the framework namely; the state, employers, employees, trade unions, families. The column “C” represents the resultant effect of labour issues namely; labour agitation, profitability, strong brands, growth in government revenue, happy society, and low productivity.
The column “B” represents the converging point from columns “A” and “C”. The arrows connecting columns “A” and “C” are the conduits which precipitate labour response and resultant effects from the environment. Column “B” represents; working conditions, tools of trade, health and safety, remunerations, welfare, employment contracts, pension plans, and conflict of interest.
The following paragraphs will briefly enunciate on highlights of the conceptual framework and its importance for the establishment of more labour firms.
- The Actors
#1: The State
In Ghana, the government remain the biggest employer. With no readily available and actual statistics of the Ghanaian labour market, it is evident the private sector is not doing much as expected to close the gap on employment ratios with the government. It is a fact that since many Ghanaian homes practice commercial culture, many people are engage in trade; mostly small trade. This form of employment is referred to as informal sector. Many engaged in this form of trade do not see it as an employment and would therefore cease any opportunity to be an employee of a company no matter how pittance the salary and poor working conditions.
Howbeit, the government is a combination of an employer and policy maker that binds both public and private sectors. Government policies on labour are not without problems; either they do not adequately respond to labour expectation or are not stringently enforced. This is where the labour management firm fits in to trumpet the adherence of labour policy and push for advocacy through management practice for continuous improvement of the labour laws in Ghana.
Employers provide the opportunity for labour but that opportunity must be in congruence with the necessary conditions for a good and healthy working life. Where employers take opportunity of the low availability of jobs to offer employees remunerations that are not commensurate with market rate is a cause for concern. Labour management firms can take up the engagement of negotiating and mediating in employee issues among employees, employers and government.
#3: Trade Unions
Trade Unions are voluntary associations that employees join. Whereas some employers allow their employees to join labour unions, other employers do not allow it. It is believed that the collective voice of employees yield better and faster negotiation than a lone voice. Therefore trade unions are good at driving home the agitation of employees.
Having labour management firms working in unison with trade unions will be a good way to go. Combining professional experience, with the right education and the right expertise and attitude always yield good result.
Employees are the reason for any employment. Employers are not doing employees favour by employing them. Rather it is the employees who give employers the opportunity by working with them. At worse it is a two-way affair; an offer and acceptance. There must be mutual benefits to both parties; but it seems employees are always at the “whims and caprices” of their employers. This attitude of employers always necessitates employee agitation which usually result in “take it or leave it” response by many employers.
Labour management firms will be best placed to mediate in some of these issues. The knowledge of labour available to the LLB holder is good enough to mediate in such cases. An upfront labour management firm will not wait until issues crop up but rather will be on a retainer coaching relations with its clients i.e. both employer and employees. Let’s be reminded that a poorly motivated employee reflects the final product of the employer.
Every good employer and employment policy involves employees’ family in their contemplation. Peaceful and happy families yield high level of productivity at work. Bad employers only relate to their employees and not with employees family.
Employees’ family are not covered in medical bills, holiday packages, discounts, and what have you. Sometimes visits by employees’ family at work premises are intolerable by some employers. Another responsibility for the creation of many labour management firms will be to working out health employer and employees’ family relations so as to boost productivity.