Are You Ready For “Ambush Elections?”

We’ve been talking about it for a couple of years. And now, unions are one step closer to a major victory. On Wednesday, February 5, 2014, The National Labor Relations Board officially proposed changes that would, in all probability, compress the time between when workers file a petition with the NLRB to hold an election and when the actual voting occurs. That period would probably be 25 days OR FEWER. That’s about two weeks less than what has been the norm for decades.

Have you taken action?

They’re often called “Ambush Elections,” for good reason. A reduced election cycle deprives employers of opportunities to explain to employees the costs of unionizing.

That’s why prevention measures need to be taken NOW, before there is even a hint of activity.

Educate employees; Train managers.

Happy, knowledgeable employees are obviously less likely to sign union authorization cards than those who are disgruntled and out-of-the-loop. Make sure they know the company culture, why it’s been successful, and how it’s handling major issues of the day.

Train managers to recognize and fix any potential problems before they get out of hand. They need to be creating a positive workplace and realize early on if behavior is changing.

Be prepared.

The Boy Scouts nailed it. Sometimes even the best-laid plans go awry. If organizing activities happen, be ready to respond with an organized plan.

Because there’s more to come.

Ambush Elections are just the beginning. Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO, was quoted in the Wall Street Journal as saying, “We applaud the National Labor Relations Board for proposing these common-sense rules to reduce delay in the NLRB election process.”

Want some suggestions? Talk to us. We’ve seen the good, and the not-so-good. Take advantage of our perspective.