Three-day workshops on negotiation techniques were held in Kenya (20 - 22 August) and in Uganda (26 - 28 August). The local organisation of the workshops was carried out respectively by the Federation of Kenya Employers and the Federation of Uganda Employers.
In both countries staff members of the employers' federation as well as company representatives involved in negotiation took part in the training. During the workshop, participants not only gained a clear insight in their 'negotiation' – personality (method and skills) and its effect on negotiating situations, they also learned to actively prepare negotiations and how to build such a relationship with their negotiation partner, that both will benefit: a 'win-win' situation. Introductions on concepts were followed by intensive role play.
Both workshops were led by Dirk Joosse and Marjolein Otter from AWVN, the general employers federation in the Netherlands with the longest standing tradition in supporting its members in every aspect of collective bargaining. Dirk and Marjolein are both thoroughbred practitioners in collective bargaining and experts in the training of negotiation skills.
Specific contributions to the workshops were made, in Kenya, by Arnout de Koster of the ILO Training Centre Turin and, in Uganda, by Jan Karel Bout of DECP.
Participants were very interested in the material presented to them and very eager to learn in the practical exercises, which were taped on video and subsequently discussed. Their overall evaluation of the workshop was very positive. Most appreciated were the relevance of the workshop for the current functioning of the participants themselves as well as the relevance for the organisations they represented.
In 2009 follow-up trainings are planned. It is also DECP's intention to set-up a 'train the trainer' programme. Training representatives of member-companies and associations in collective bargaining / negotiation skills as well as rendering experienced advice on collective bargaining to member companies and associations is an extremely worthwhile win – win service to members.