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I’m working as a clerk in one pharmaceutical company that imports and distributes medicines. My question is about the worker’s right to know basic information about the company’s sales revenue, profit and loss statement, etc. Can employees, being one of the stakeholders, force its management to divulge corporate financial data? I’m asking that because I’d like to move to another company that could offer better pay package for me. – Just Asking.
The drug store in one city was closed down by its creditors. As he left the store premises for the last time, the saddened proprietor paused long enough to post the following sign on the front door:
“Our doors are locked. The following services formerly available here, may be had elsewhere starting today: Ice-water at fountain in the park, general information from the police station at the corner, change for P500 bill at the nearby bank, matches and scratch pads at the hotel, magazines for browsing at the doctor’s office, bus information at the terminal, and loafing at any other location at your own choosing.”
Seeking your employer’s vital corporate information to help you decide on your career move puzzles me a lot. Why make it difficult when you can simply leave your current employ for another? In any event, in case you still don’t know, be forewarned that your initiative to secure financial data may result in your management being resentful of your move.
Now, can you as “one of the stakeholders” demand financial information from your employer? I’m not sure if I got it all wrong. You’re not a stockholder, but only one of those employees whose interest in the company is to earn a salary, enjoy the benefits, and have security of tenure. Am I right?
If that’s the case, then your access to information may only be limited and done through the Management Information System, which according to John Case can be done through a system called open-book management. With this approach, employees need not sweat it out at the Securities and Exchange Commission and Bureau of Internal Revenue to get copies of your target company’s financial statements or tax returns.
There are many progressive companies that are into open-book management, although many of them practice it under certain conditions. In these organizations, management shares a wide range of financial data such as sales revenue, operating expenses, and net revenue on a quarterly basis.
Along with these financial statements, management is equally interested in sharing sales forecast, productivity data, turnover rate, even absenteeism and accident rate, etc. with employees. In fact, many of these companies even train their workers to understand and analyze financial information so that they can empower them to help achieve corporate goals.
Key results are posted in company bulletin boards if not via intranet so that the employees are fully informed, if not celebrate when certain milestones are achieved. In some cases, organizations offer stock ownership to employees to secure their loyalty.
In his book “Open-Book Management” (1995), management writer Case says, “Open-Book Management gets people involved and helps them take seriously rather than shirk it.”
With your current concern, the odds are pretty high that you recognize the importance of transparency. But still, you might be forced to answer the following questions: Are you ready to take the same responsibility? Are you willing to be a part of the solution? These are reasonable questions. Pause for a minute to think about the wonderful world of work.
Are we still in the employers’ market where organizations can choose the best and the brightest from a sea of job applicants? Clearly, the answer is still in the affirmative. While everyone has stories of rejections from their prospective employers, the overwhelming majority of the employed receive their pay and perks on time, regardless of their employment status.
When times are good, you have the ability to do things differently, but not much urgency or desire. When times are bad, with your low pay and you wanting to move to a greener pasture, it has become punishingly hard. Why? Your answer is as good as mine.
DO YOU WANT TO CHALLENGE THIS ADVICE? This article is for non-managerial employees who can’t raise an issue against their bosses for fear of reprisal or job insecurity. Send your supporting or contrary view to firstname.lastname@example.org or follow Rey Elbo on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter.
InterAksyon.com means BUSINESS