Yes, yes, of course the collective bargaining is an important matter – especially in these difficult times for everyone. But the dramaturgy with which both sides enter the race is the same year after year. And it’s starting to get a bit boring.
Collective bargaining usually follows the same process: they begin with an initial sniff on the part of the employer and employee, which usually results not in consensus, but in wild expressions of disappointment. “Insolence”, “contempt” or “blockade” are popular terms that can easily win you any KV bargaining bingo. It’s so predictable!
In the end everyone is satisfied
This is usually followed by the traditional flexing of muscles, with both parties expressing their outrage at the other’s offer through the media. The rattle of the saber grows louder at will and the threat of attack cannot be missed. And finally, at some point there is agreement in the golden mean, including a press release from both sides that they are “satisfied” with the result and consider it their own success. The motto: Everyone is a winner, the social partnership works!
You can also achieve results without staging
Now one can of course think that negotiations need a certain show to come to a good result. gift. But the fact that this staging is held on a large scale and partly over the backs of customers year after year, only to finally reach an agreement in the middle, may induce signs of fatigue in one observer or another. Because, according to the thesis: you can achieve a good result for everyone without pathetic staging – if you want to.
Why can’t the railroad workers do what the dealers can?
That’s how the dealers’ negotiators did it, for example. Although they too could not do without the usual choreography, they finally managed to reach a consensus – without strikes during the Advent season, which is so important for retail. Why can’t the railway workers do the same? Their salaries are largely funded by taxpayers’ money!
One could also raise all wages at once
Perhaps it would be easier for everyone in this country if collective bargaining agreements in all sectors were adjusted annually for inflation at a standardized rate. Every employee receives the same salary increase, whether they are nurses, civil servants, metalworkers, salesmen or railway workers. That would be fair and we would save ourselves the constant noise. But maybe the Austrian just needs his political entertainment.
I am George Kunkel, an author working for Today Times Live. I specialize in opinion pieces and cover stories that are both informative and thought-provoking – helping to shape public discourse on key issues. My work is regularly featured across the network’s many platforms, including print media and social media.