Styles & Skills – Employee Relations

Styles & Skills in Employee Relations


Helen is the HR manager at a large advertising firm in Melbourne. she is currently in negotiations with unions about a new enterprise agreement. Negotiations have been tough and there have been threats of industrial action from the union. The media is all over this story as the firm employs over 2000 people.

Currently the bargaining has been going for more than 6 months and the two parties are still a long way apart in what they want. Helen is concerned that this will affect the bottom line of the company and feels her manager’s are not willing to budge from their position in the negotiation.

  1. Discuss which management style Helen should use  when negotiating a this new agreement
  2. Prepare an argument as to why Helen’s managers should use a more consultative approach.
  3. What skills would be beneficial to Helen in her situation?
  4. Explain the impact this negotiation could have on the internal environment of the company

Test Your Understanding

  1. Explain how different management styles can affect employee relations in an organisation (4 marks)
  2. Describe 3 management skills  that could be used in the negotiation of an agreement (3 marks)
  3. Identify and justify 3 management skills that could be used by a human resource manager that is trying to resolve a dispute (6 marks)
  4. Describe and justify the most appropriate management style to use when negotiating a new enterprise agreement (3 marks)
  5. Explain two benefits of having an effective employee relations system (2 marks)

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