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The Human Factor In The Application Of Work-Study

Author : seyi alaowyur


Supervisors represent management to the worker on the shop floor, and just as departmental managers will take their attitudes from the top manager, so workers will take theirs from their supervisors. If it is evident that the supervisor thinks that "this work study stuff is nonsense", the workers will not respect the specialist and will make no efforts to carry out his or her suggestions, which, in any case, have to come to them through their supervisor.

Before the work-study practitioner starts work, the whole purpose of work-study and the procedures involved must be very carefully explained to the supervisors, so that he or she understands exactly what is being done and why. Unless this is done, the supervisor is likely to be difficult, if not actually obstructive, for many reasons. Among them are the following:

1. Supervisors are the people most deeply affected by the work-study. The work for which they may have been responsible for years is being challenged; if, through the application of work study methods, the efficiency of the operations for which they are responsible is greatly improved, they may feel that their prestige in the eye of their superiors and the of the workers will be lessened.

2. In most firms where specialists have not been used, the whole running of a certain operation - planning programmes of work, developing job methods, making up time sheets, setting piece rates, hiring and firing workers - may have been done by the supervisor. The mere fact some of these responsibilities have been taken away is likely to make him or her experience a loss of status. No one likes to think that he or she has "lost face' or "lost ground".

3. If disputes arise or the workers are upset, supervisors are the first people who will be called upon to clear matters up, and it is difficult for them to do so fairly if they do not understand the problem.

The work-study practitioner will only retain the supervisor's friendship and respect by showing from the beginning that he or she is not trying to usurp their place. The following rules must be observed:

1. The work-study person must never give a direct order to a worker. All instructions must be given through the supervisor. The only exception to this is in matters connected with methods improvements where the worker has been asked by the supervisor to carry out the instructions of the work-study person.

2. Workers asking questions calling for decisions out side the technical field of work-study should always be referred to their supervisor.

3. The work-study person should take care never to express opinions to a worker, which may be interpreted as critical of the supervisor (however much he or she may feel like it!). If the worker later says to the supervisors: ".but Mr./Ms . said.", there will be trouble!

4. The work-study person must not allow the workers to "play him or her off" against the supervisor or to use him or her to get decisions altered which they consider harsh.

5. The work-study person should seek the supervisor's advice in the selection of jobs to be studied and in all technical matter connected with the process (even if he or she knows a great deal about it). The work-study person should never try to start alone.

This list of "Do's" and "Don'ts" may look frightening but is mainly common sense and good manners. The workers in any working area can only have one boss - their supervisor - and everything must be done to uphold his or her authority. Of course, once the work-study person and the supervisor have worked together and understand one another, there can be some relaxation; but that is a matter of judgment, and any suggestion for relaxation should come from the supervisor.


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Tags:   work study, campus, work-study funds, , work study program, work-study award, work-study job, work-study positions

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Submitted : 2011-07-10    Word Count : 870    Times Viewed: 697