Globalisation: Manufacturing and Workplace Change

5164 Words Mar 5th, 2002 21 Pages
The phenomenon known as globalisation

Introduction
To begin with, tell them that they will need to look at the essay questions today
Later we will be doing a trial reflective exercise

Let 's look at Globalisation
My story
When my colleagues and I were faced with redundancy we were placed in a unique position. Or perhaps it wasn 't quite so unique, just unspoken; ‘experts ' are not renowned for publicly applying their own theories to themselves. After years working as labour researchers or workplace change consultants we found ourselves in the position of having the stories we told other workers and their managements about why change was happening being reflected back to us by our managers and the people employed to facilitate
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These ‘events ', the writers argue, must be responded to in particular ways by governments and organisations in order to succeed in this new ‘competitive ' and ‘global ' environment. The emphasis here is on increasing competitiveness through introducing high-quality, lean production processes, and marketing strategies aimed at quick response to customer demand.

Following this, I briefly examine how writers have perceived the Australian Government 's response to these ‘events '.

Thirdly, I show how writers on workplace change, even critical writers, largely accept that the ‘quality ', ‘lean production ' and ‘customer focus ' categorisation of workplace changes.

Thus, the analysis of the politics and power associated with workplace change is streamed according to prevailing neo-liberal or critical theories without ever questioning the nature of the concepts themselves. My argument is that through the use of these reified concepts for analysing workplace change much of what is important about the experience of being a worker in the late 1990 's, about the experience of being human amongst other humans in industrial spaces, is difficult to access and leaves what I consider important questions unanswered.

Different
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