Workplace peace is what was envisioned in the birth of capitalism. Capitalism is a system where private individuals are the administrators of a country’s trade and general industry. A capitalist society enables privateers to profit off their own businesses. There is no central planner. Everything is based on the invisible hand theory.
The economy survives off the ebb and flow of supply and demand. The majority of the countries around the world are implementing a capitalist system. Why is it that there is a widening of the gap between the rich and poor everywhere? Why is there always chaos in the workplace, especially regarding labor versus the corporate system?
Workplace peace is the long-term goal of capitalism. While this dream has long faded in memory, most still dream of equal status between worker and capitalist. The ultimate goal of capitalism is to enable the worker to make something of themselves. Some communities’ goals are centralized on pushing harmony for the workplace. Labor unions, for example, are only a few of those who strive to achieve the betterment of workers’ way of living. Unions are the primary way workers negotiate the terms and conditions of their work.
How can we do better for the workplace in a capitalist society?
Actively encouraging union membership is an integral step to do better in a capitalist society. Unions have always been the backbone of workers ever since the beginning of the industrial revolution. Unions are responsible for the various benefits workers have.
For example, because of unions, workers can avail of hazard pay and other workers’ benefits relating to personal injury. Unions can also pool money to pay lawyers for injuries as spine injuries, losing an appendage, or chemical burns. Unions also provide their workers with plenty of protection against harming themselves and taking disadvantageous contracts with their employers. Through collective bargaining agreements, minimum standards are required and enforced in employment contracts. Union members generally earn better and have more benefits in general compared to other people who do not have union membership.
Grievance machinery for union members is also more effective in ironing out complaints and problems with employers. Most unions have an already established structure with companies on how to resolve disputes internally. Most of the problems don’t even reach their day in court. Unions help businesses achieve agreement with their laborers. While large corporations are trying to get rid of the ability of workers to organize themselves into unions, they fail to realize that giving in to unions will grant society more pathways to freedom and peace.
Workers as Stockholders
Treating all members of the company as a stockholder will work wonders for the laborers and the company as a whole. A stockholder is a person who owns equity or part of a company. Even with just a share, a worker has the right to call the company his own. Being a stockholder gives a certain amount of power to the holder.
According to Investopedia, a stockholder has rights over the company such as voting power, ownership, assignment rights, dividends, sue for wrongful acts, and the right to inspect corporation documents. Treating every member of the company as stockholders will only make them more invested in its direction. Making employees also realize that their future also depends on the company’s future, they will be emboldened to care more for the welfare of the company as a whole.
Inviting everyone — from top to bottom — to learn and improve financial literacy can only benefit all members of a capitalist society. Little by little, wealth inequality can be addressed by teaching all members of society the power that wealth brings. Excesses are the demise of a capitalist utopia. Making known the ability to control one’s finances on useful items is the kind of discipline everyone should be taught. We can do better for the workplace by relearning how the entire financial structure works. If we can make one person evade the debt trap, we are one step closer to reducing wealth inequality.
Peace and pride in manpower and labor are things that we, as a society, are far from achieving. Due to the endless economic injustices that people are experiencing daily, we have a hard time correcting what was lost. However, through the combined efforts of persons who care, we can do better for people even amidst a capitalist society by achieving workplace peace through unions and financial education. This way, no rights are stepped on, and everyone is treated well.