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When I'm at work: Working on a committee - Learner's workbook


Topic 2 - Why do we have workplace committees?

What you will need

You will need:

You're ready so let's start ...

Watch the slides carefully. They will tell you what this topic is about. The slides are about the information in the boxes. Your trainer will talk with you about this information.

Why do we have workplace committees?

There are four common reasons for having committees.

1. Sharing the workload

Working as a group shares the workload or leads to better ideas. When there is a large task to be done, having a group working on things is better than leaving it to one person.

Some examples of workplace committees include:

2. It's the law

The Australian Government has rules about what makes a good service. These rules are called the Disability Services Standards. They help to make sure that your workplace gives you quality service. Quality service includes having your say at work. Working on a committee is one way that you can have your say at work.

Some committees are formed because a law or rule says that the workplace has to have these committees. For example, OH&S legislation requires the workplace to have a safety committee. An industrial award may require a workplace committee to talk about changes to working conditions.

3. Encouraging workers to have a say

Hearing the views of workers is a way that management will know what needs to change or improve in the workplace.

Disability Services Standard 3 is all about having your say. Your workplace has to give you choice and has to listen to you about:

4. Ideas for the workplace and the workers

Workers know what is happening in their work areas and have ideas about how to make things better. A committee gives workers an opportunity to talk with other workers and their supervisors about issues and ideas in the workplace.

This all contributes to making a more productive, happy, and safe workplace.

The pool table story

Now watch and listen to the pool table story.

The social club received a letter at its monthly meeting from Joe, Ross and Alf.

The letter said, 'We are really cross and don't want to pay any more money to the social club because we haven't been able to play pool at lunchtime for four weeks. It seems to be always the same blokes who get the table and hog it with their mates. This isn't fair because we helped pay for this table as much as they did and we don't get a chance to play pool.'

The pool table

The social club committee discuss the letter. What can the committee do to solve the problem?

Pretend that you and your group are the social club committee. Discuss the letter, and talk about how you would solve this problem. Tell your trainer about what you decided. Your trainer will help you with this activity.

Questions for discussion

1. How have you helped to solve the pool table problem?

2. Who have you helped?

3. How will you get back to the people who wrote the letter to let them know what you have done about their complaint?

4. Why do you think it is important to have a committee like this one?

Workbook activities

Your trainer will give you a copy of the Disability Services Standards. Find Standard 3. What is Standard 3 all about?

How can having your say at work make the workplace better for everyone?

What do you think would make your workplace better?

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