Effectiveness of Workplace Democracy
Most people express a strong desire to live in a democratic society; nevertheless, they gladly surrender their freedom at the door of their workplace. In general, public and private work environments in the United States tend not to be democratic in nature. In fact, in some work environments workers have no input of any kind into the decision-making process.
Workers are likely to find an authoritarian hierarchical structure in place, with positions of power usually controlled by a fairly small, homogeneous group of individuals. Increasingly, scholars and members of underrepresented groups have challenged the structure of the typical workplace. They argue that democracy in the workplace may be beneficial both to employees and to the organizations in which they work. Concerns remain, however, about whether the presence of democracy in the workplace actually is useful or sustainable given the impact of economic pressures and global competition on organizations.
To prepare for this Discussion:
• Review the article "Workplace Democracy: Why Bother?" in this week’s Learning Resources. Consider the rationale for workplace democracy.
• Review the article "The Democratic Ethos and Public Management" in this week’s Learning Resources. Think about arguments made in support of democracy in public organizations.
• Review the article "Markets Against Economic Democracy" in this week’s Learning Resources. Think about how the presence of democracy in the workplace might affect an organization.
• Take note of arguments for and against the presence of workplace democracy.
• Identify democratic principles that might be present in a democratic workplace.
• Reflect on your workplace environment or one with which you are familiar, and think about the degree to which democracy is present in the organization.
• Consider whether the organization would be more effective if it were more or less democratic.
• Reflect on whether democracy is a sustainable option for the contemporary workplace.
With these thoughts in mind:
Post a brief (2 pages) description of your workplace (mine is Bellevue Hospital Center – A Public Hospital which is also a part of the New York City Health and Hospital Corporation) or one with which you are familiar.
Include an assessment of the degree to which democracy is present.
Then explain whether you think the organization would be more effective if it were more or less democratic and why.
Finally, share your thoughts about whether you think democracy is sustainable in the contemporary workplace.
Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.
Last Updated on February 10, 2019 by EssayPro