Click on the picture to view the full video
Gawker obtained a copy of Target's notorious anti-union propaganda video showed to all new employees. The poorly-designed video is little more than a litany of lies and misleading statements about unions and a series of statements about how awesome it is to work for Target without a union. The video begins with a portrayal of unions as 'businesses' that exist solely to make a profit:
That's a huge challenge but we believe we can win the battle with the competition because not only do we have high quality products at competitive prices we've got the best guest service in the business. And because we're the best that makes those of us at Target a target our selves.
We're a Target because we're a threat to unions. The unions that represent grocery store workers.
When we take business away from unionized grocery stores that means they need fewer employees.
And fewer grocery store employees means fewer union members. And fewer members? Well that's a problem for the union business. That's right, I said business. Union business.
A union is not a charity. It's not a club and it's not part of the government. It's a business. A business that has to take in money to survive. But it doesn't have any products to sell. All it has is memberships to sell. A unions only source of income is the money they charge members.
Money for initiation, dues, fines, assessments. You get the picture. So it's pretty obvious that the fewer members their business has the less money they collect.
Then it transitions into an argument that unions were once really great, but that they achieved their goals and are no longer needed:
One of the biggest reasons is that workers know that all the good things unions once did child safety laws, workmans comp, all of that they're all laws today. Laws protecting workers. They were passed along time ago.
And no body wants to pay dues for something they already have.
So the numbers just keep going down. You can see why the union would want to organize us here at Target.
The next argument is that unions are rigid and prevent noble companies like Target from responding to mythical emergencies that they don't describe:
If the unions did try to organize Target team members they could also try and bring along there way of doing business. An old fashioned rigid structure.
Old fashioned is right. Being able to change quickly and adapt to new opportunities being flexible. That's the key to running a successful business in todays market and we've got the flexibility now.
Right you are. No one knows exactly what could happen. But there are lots of examples of how rigid grocery store contracts could hurt our stores ability to serve guests and actually hurt our team members in the process.
Then they provide the most ridiculous example of an 'emergency' that I've ever heard:
Here's what we mean. Let's say you're working in stationary but you're walking through domestics on your way to check on something. A guest stops you and ask for help. What would you do? With out even thinking about it you'd stop and give them any assistance they required.
But what if union work rules say you can't work outside of your department? What do you tell the guest? Sorry I can't help you? That makes you look bad. But more importantly it means our guest doesn't get immediate attention and they might not come back. So everyone gets hurt. Everyone except the union. Right now team members can get more hours based on their ability to cover more than one area. You have the option of being cross trained and becoming a more valuable member of your team.
Next up is an attack on the very concept of seniority, as if the concept is a hard and fast rule that takes nothing else into account:
Also under the old fashioned union rules that really haven't changed in decades seniority rules. Rather than treating people as individuals everything depends on when you were hired. Schedules, job assignments, promotions, transfers, even days off are often decided by seniority only.
And that can be one of the least efficient and really not a nice way to operate. There is no regard for individual skills and needs of each team member. Top workers suffer because their performance isn't reflected in job assignments or promotions and the company suffers because the best qualified people don't necessarily get the right jobs.
Once again the only winner is the union. That can justify collecting dues from people that don't get the jobs or hours they want based simply on that seniority date. They don't have to offer an explanation at all about why someone else might be better qualified for the job and at Target we don't have those rigid rules. We're open and honest. You've got the desire, we'll tell you what you need to do to get ready for another assignment. We believe in putting the best person in every job based on their qualifications not on seniority. That helps to keep our employees productive and our guests happy.
Get it, Target is open and honest and unions are not nice. And unions are also out to get the customers, too:
And speaking of our guests they can also be a Target of the unions. Some day you might come in to work and find pickets telling guests to not shop at Target. Or you might read articles about unions threatening to boycott our stores just to scare away our guests and encourage them to shop somewhere else. None of that helps you or any other team member. After all every one of us depends on our guests for our jobs.
The video continues with more innuendo about how unions are really only looking out for themselves, how they are going to misuse your signature and about how awesome Target is and how Target would never do anything bad, but unions will probably steal your first-born child or something. They close with this slogan:
Refuse to sign and keep Target union free.
Target is, according to its own employees, as anti-union as Walmart. From its employee handbook:
We believe in solving issues and concerns by working together with your help and input. Target wants to continue to create the kind of workplace where team members don't want or need union representation to solve issues. We don't believe a union or any third-party representative would improve anything for you, our guests or the company. There are a lot of great things that go along with being a Target team member and you don't need to go to an outside party to get them.
Under "Get To Know Our Expectations"
As a new team member, you need to know what Target expects from you. Here are a few examples of things that could cause you to lose your job.
Don't Solicit Your Team Members
During working time (not including meal and break periods or any other times when a team member is not expected to be engaged in work activities) you must not ask your team members to join organizations or pools, or to make gifts to charities. Work connected with the United Way annual drive is not a violation of this rule.