Essay - Building a Power Base Case#40: the Luggers Versus the Butchers...

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Building a Power B*****se

Case#40: The Luggers Versus the Butchers

This is a paper that concentrates on building a power base and answers questions proposed in a case study.


Food Merchandising Corporation, based in northern New Jersey, is a company that deals with a variety of prepackaged meats, along with beef that needs to be cut by butchers. This company is responsible for sending the finished product to various markets, especially in the Midwest.

***** company has two main types of employees, ***** butchers and the luggers.

Original Characteristic ***** the Jobs

The ***** ***** butchers originally had certain characteristics of *****ir jobs. The luggers were responsible for unloading and stocking the beef. ***** required lifting 200 pounds ***** beef all day and only those who were physically fit could perform this duty. When the work slowed down, they ***** assigned other tasks to *****.

Butchers had the job of sawing the beef ***** cutting it into a variety of cuts of meats. They were required to stay on the line throughout the day and could not leave their generalized work area.

***** in *****s

The job characteristics changed approximately eight years ago, when the warehouse became unionized. The employees with ***** most seniority were given the first choice of job position. ***** older men who ***** been ***** the company for years preferred the higher paying, less strenuous job of butcher. The re*****ing employees had no option other than ***** become luggers.

Status Levels

The status levels among the warehouse ***** determined by different factors. The butcher's position was considered the much more desirable position six ***** ago. The butchers were paid a higher salary to st***** in one area and cut the meat.

Luggers, however, had the hard job of carrying over ***** pounds of ***** from railroad cars to ***** loading dock. Also, while the ***** made enough to support their families, most ***** the ***** had to work second jobs at night.


There were some fac*****rs that influenced group cohesiveness between luggers and butchers. They each had their own jobs to perform and originally there was no competition between the two groups, leading to numerous friendships among ***** workers.

***** progressed and the ***** started ***** utilize a new portable rail system that enabled them to make tips by unloaded fr***** *****. They no longer had to carry the heavy loads ***** were able to make more than the *****. This created disharmony among the two groups, that ***** originally been close. The luggers found if ***** worked together as a team, they could unload the freight cars f*****ter and thus ***** more money in tips. This quickly lead ***** luggers to ***** a cohesive group, while the butchers st*****rted to associate mainly among themselves, as they found their position ***** no longer the high *****, ***** job it once w*****.


The ***** of the ***** were at one time a close group. When the union c*****me in, ***** job characteristics changed *****


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