Michelle Kaminski's area of expertise is focused o labor law, collective bargaining, steward training, communication skills, the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the union role in team concept workplaces, and basic economic history. Kaminski researches teams, workplace health and safety, and women in organizations.
Industry Expertise (3)
Writing and Editing
Areas of Expertise (4)
Right to Work
Women and Leadership
University of Michigan: Ph.D., Organizational Psychology 1993
University of Michigan: A.M., Organizational Psychology 1988
State University of New York: B.A., Psychology, Economics 1982
Journal Articles (5)
Although labor studies research has commonly looked to sociology, history, and economics for new perspectives, behavioral psychology has largely been underutilized. This article provides a popular psychological model of behavior and examples of its application in issues of interest to labor, specifically the Employee Free Choice Act and the auto industry "rescue." It is the authors' belief that considering such models will provide a different viewpoint through which to analyze labor issues and promote further integration of psychology and labor studies.
Women comprise 44 percent of the labor movement, but a smaller percentage of union leaders. We discuss the importance of having a leadership that is representative of the membership, some of the differences between male and female leadership, and why the labor movement needs more women leaders. In order to promote women's leadership, we first discuss a four‐stage model of how union leaders develop: finding your voice, developing basic skills, figuring out the politics, and setting the agenda. We then add suggestions about what current union leaders can do to promote women's leadership at each of these four stages.
The authors examine the relationship between gender and organizational justice perceptions and the implications of this relationship for organizing women. They employ a survey study design to confirm expectations associated with the anecdotal literature on this topic, namely that women place greater value on interactional justice than on distributive or procedural justice. Results indicate that gender leads to valuing interactional justice more highly only in interaction with race. Specifically, in contrast to white women and both white and black men, black women give greater weight to being treated with dignity and respect than to the other two organizational justice dimensions.
Rising income inequality in the 1990s was used to examine the links between micro- and macro-justice. Data from a sample of 119 managers and 334 union members supported our hypothesis that those who more strongly endorsed equality norms at the micro-justice level perceived macro-level income inequality as more unjust. Looking at two key subgroups, our hypothesis that union members were more likely than managers to endorse an equality norm was not supported. Yet managers were significantly more likely than union members to endorse an equity norm at the micro level, as predicted. Finally, our fourth hypothesis that the equality norm mediates the relationship between union membership and perceived injustice was not supported.
Union leadership classes can be the catch-all of labor education. Such programs may include theories about effective leadership, personal assessment of leadership styles, updates on current 'hot topics,' or skills training.