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1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
In psychology, decision-making is regarded as the cognitive process resulting in the selection of a belief or a course of action among several alternative possibilities. Every decision-making process produces a final choice, which may or may not prompt action. Decision-making is the process of identifying and choosing alternatives based on the values, preferences and beliefs of the decision-maker (John, 2009).
Organizations are always faced with the challenges of decision making. A lot of decisions are made daily to keep an organization running. Optimization of performance is the priority of every organization and management is saddled with the responsibility of goal attainment (Chuka, 2010).
Uduak (2014) noted that one of the modern approaches organizations use in reaching a decision is through the involvement of its staff in top decision making. Popularly known as participatory decision making, organizations seek to allow their staff partakes in bringing out best decisions for the organization. One of such times when organizational decision making becomes crucial is during industrial conflicts and one of such approaches used is collective bargaining to quickly resolve challenges and get organizational performance high. In other times, the collective bargaining approach is used during non conflict periods to explore options for actions (Selena and Helen, 2016).
Collective bargaining is central to any industrial relations system since it is a tool through which regulated flexibility is achieved (Godfrey, 2007). A number of studies show that where workers had their terms and conditions of employment determined through collective bargaining and where management supported unions, there was an improved industrial relations environment (Edwards, 2004).
Adewole (2010) asserted that frequent eruption of industrial conflicts between employers and employees in general can be effectively managed through collective negotiation and consultation with the workers’ representatives. Collective bargaining has been noted to help promote cooperation and mutual understanding between workers and management by providing a framework for dealing with industrial relations issues without resort to strike and lockouts. Therefore, fair and legal process will result in successful collective bargaining, hence maintenance of industrial discipline and peace and vice-versa (Gomez 2003).
Collective bargaining is specifically an industrial relations mechanism or tool, and is an aspect of negotiation, applicable to the employment relationship. As a process, the two are in essence the same, and the principles applicable to negotiations are relevant to collective bargaining as well. However, some differences need to be noted. In collective bargaining the union always has a collective interest since the negotiations are for the benefit of several employees. Where collective bargaining is not for one employer but for several, collective interests become a feature for both parties to the bargaining process.
In negotiations in non-employment situations, collective interests are less, or non-existent, except when states negotiate with each other. Further, in labour relations, negotiations involve the public interest such as where negotiations are on wages which can impact on prices. This is implicitly recognized when a party or the parties seek the support of the public, especially where negotiations have failed and work disruptions follow (Uchendu, 2014).
Organizations processes of decision making often involve great conflicts of interests, approaches and competition of ideas which require great deal of caution in handling such disagreements arising. Unfortunately the term “bargaining” implies that the process is one of haggling, which is more appropriate to one-time relationships such as a one-time purchaser or a claimant to damages. While collective bargaining may take the form of haggling, ideally it should involve adjusting the respective positions of the parties in a way that is satisfactory to all. Hence, collective bargaining could be used in taking major decisions that can affect organizational performance so that everyone has a fair try of his ideas.
In the contest of this research work, which is highly under researched, the interests is on finding out how collective bargaining can be used in decision making and organizational performance in First Bank Plc, Unizik chapter.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
One basic feature of the components of an organization is varying interests. Every stakeholder in an organization has his/her interest which normally may differ from other stakeholder’s interests. The extent to which these interests are harmonized and satisfied determines the extent to which the organizational climate/environment is conducive for team work and maximum production. These interests are often realized through collective bargaining – an instrument in labour/management relations which allows both management and workers to discuss issues and take joint decisions that will ensure the survival of the organization.
The banking industry in Nigeria is one such organization where there is a lot of emphasis on performance because profitability and sustainability is sorely revolved around performance. If customers are not satisfied and if bank policies cannot guarantee profits, investors would withdraw their investments from the bank, customers will withdraw and they will record huge losses thus resulting to eventual fold up hence the need for them to up their game in making the best decision to guarantee high performance.
Over the years, there have been growing sensitivity and concern over the dismal performance of the Nigeria banking sector, thus, the number of reforms aimed at repositioning it – giving it a greater capacity to perform. In spite of these reform measures, there has continued to be the unlikelihood of the attainment of the purposes for which these reforms are made.
On the other hand, there is a strong conviction of the role the Employees can play in enhancing the performance and repositioning of these banks performance. However by acts of commission or omission, the management has not done much in considering what effects collective bargaining could have in enhancing organizational performance. Banks often have policies passed and trickled down from the top to the branches and there is a believe that if staff are involved in a collective bargaining approach in deciding what best options are adopted towards enhancing performance, the intended goal would be achieved and performance increased. Consequently, the system gets repeatedly ruined. Enormous research has been undertaken in regard to issues on trade union, collective bargaining and organizational performance but little attention has been dedicated to assessing and examining how collective bargaining could be used in decision making to boost organizational performance hence this study.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The general objective of this study is to examine how collective bargaining in decision making can affect organizational performance in First Bank Plc, Unizik.
The specific objectives are;
1.4 Research Questions
1.5 Statement of Hypotheses
The following hypotheses are made for the purpose of this study;
Hi: There is a relationship between negotiations on best work practices and profitability in First Bank Plc, Awka.
Hi: Management can explore the options of adopting certain opinions of staff in decision making to optimize performance.
1.6 Significance of the Study
The significance of this study cannot be over emphasized. This studies relevance is so much that it will add to the few available literatures on how collective bargaining in decision making can affect organizational performance. It would also serve as reference materials for students and scholars on related issues and open up the frontiers for further study.
Organizations can archive this work for reference purposes and increasing of their cache of experience in decision making. They will come to appreciate the need to adopt the collective bargaining approach long known for resolving conflicts in decisions making in organizations.
Also, staff would learn how to use their powers of negotiation in making decision beyond their welfare but also in making such decisions that will border on customer satisfaction in organizations.
1.7 Scope and Delimitation of the Study
This study will concentrate on examining the relationships that exists between the option of collective bargaining in decision making and organizational performance in First Bank Plc, Awka.
1.8 Limitations of the Study
The researcher of this work did encounter some major problems in the course of this research.
Time was a problem as the time for the study was grossly inadequate. The researcher had to battle with keeping up with appointments and carrying on with his studies too.
The funds needed to facilitate the field work and research for this study was scarcely available due to the economic recession in the country. Also, access to materials to review was a major problem with a negative attitude encountered from the respondents who were generally lackadaisical in providing the needed response for this work.
The researcher however was able to manage the little time and resources to see to the successful end of this research work.
1.9 Definitions of Terms