Formation and Recognition

The unionizing process looks pretty simple on paper — it’s only a few steps, after all. But the success of each one of those steps requires teamwork and careful strategy. Nobody said it would be a walk in the park, but when it comes time to reap the rewards of higher pay and greater equity, it’s worth it. Articles in this section dig into the processes, both the legal and more informal, that bring you from initial conversations to winning that certification election.

How to talk to your coworkers about unionizing

While we have faith in your social skills, there are some things you should know before approaching your peers about unionizing. That’s why we’ve compiled some helpful tips on how to broach the subject like a boss. Or rather, like a worker.

Privacy FAQ for workers forming unions

Anxieties over being too public with union activities are bound to come up, so here’s a rundown on a few aspects of the process to know when it comes to privacy.

What’s a bargaining unit?

Sometimes the word union and phrase bargaining unit are used interchangeably, but knowing how one functions in relation to the other under U.S. law is key in the early stages of organizing your workplace.

Union-busting: what to expect and how to respond

Union-busting has been a lucrative industry dating back to the infamous Pinkertons. The tactics have changed but the goal is the same - to intimidate workers out of organizing. What should you expect and how can you respond?

Publicity: when, why, and how to go public

Taking your union public is an inevitable step that every organizer and organizing committee must make. It can come before cards are signed or after the results of an election are certified, but at some point in or after the process, you’ll have to.

How to run a union meeting

Unions are a group of people working collectively towards a solution. Whether in-person or virtual, it’s important to know how to facilitate effective meetings so that you can keep your organizing campaign moving forward.

A day in the life of a union organizer

Though the unpredictable nature of people and politics means that strategies and plans change rapidly, there are some standard tools in every organizer’s kit.

Social media tool kit

Publicizing your union goals, updates, and more to the public allows you to make inroads with communities involved in the labor movement and build solidarity.

Strategies for engaging remote workers

Keeping members engaged is all about finding a balance between encouraging participation without alienating them or burning people out. To quote the lefty poet and playwright Oscar Wilde; “The trouble with socialism is that it takes up too many evenings.”

Who determines who’s in my union?

Especially if you’re just getting started, this may seem like a lot to take in, but it’s important to know that you need to be strategic about who your union represents from the outset and be able to see through the sometimes murky lines that divide you and your coworkers from management.

What’s an organizing committee? Why should I form one?

At its root, an organizing committee is a group of workers who come together to change their workplace; OCs may form on an ad hoc basis or to address specific workplace issues, like health and safety concerns.megan

Is my coworker a supervisor or a manager?

The factors that classify someone as a manager or supervisor may not always be so clearcut, but there are general differences that can help you narrow your list down.

How to turn a conversation into action

Talking to coworkers is a critical part of forming a union - not just once, but on an ongoing basis. Management talks to workers all day - for the union to be meaningful it has to become a stronger force than management.

What's union neutrality?

Union neutrality is a promise made by management not to interfere during an organizing drive. It typically creates a more collaborative, less expensive, and less time-consuming unionizing process and negotiations.

When should our campaign go public?

There are a few key pieces of prep work that will help you launch a successful public campaign. Here are three must-haves before going public: