How was your Labour Day? Did you celebrate work—or a day off from it? Make a last visit to the cottage or close the backyard pool? Get together with friends and family for an end-of-summer bash?
The Labour Day long weekend signals the end of the summer season for most people. Me? I’m hanging on to summer at least until autumn starts—and hopefully until Thanksgiving!
September signals beginnings, too. Are your kids finally off to school, after two or four months of spending too much time under foot? Are you starting a new season with your book club, church group, or fitness club or going to school yourself?
In our workplaces, Labour Day marks the beginning of a new season of meetings. After a summer hiatus, we return to intentional labour relations work. Of course, labour and management meet as needed during the summer for bargaining, grievances, and other workplace matters.
But after summer vacations end, we meet in a forum where progressive labour relations shines—the labour-management committee. Leaders in CLAC-represented workplaces meet with the management team to work out anticipated challenges, changes, and problems.
The committee shares one primary interest: creating and maintaining workplace harmony. The committee members form a community of labour and management working together.
Since its founding, CLAC has emphasized the power and importance of community—in our homes, neighbourhoods, and at work.
In community, we accomplish more than we can as individuals, drawn by our shared mission and shared challenges. There is strength in numbers, in solidarity. We are better together.
Communities provide an opportunity for learning and fellowship. People in our communities walk alongside us, in good times and bad, encouraging us in our work, our faith, our school, or whatever we endeavour to do. They help us to accomplish goals and complete tasks and keep us accountable to each other. They are an extension of our family.
The start of the fall season brings the possibility of new communities, new relationships, new opportunities. Make the most of them.
When you meet with coworkers, your union stewards and representatives, and management, bring a sense of intentional community to the relationship. Be friendly. Be vulnerable. Show your care for the well-being of the other person.
That starts community. You and the workplace community you are part of will benefit from your good will and positive efforts.