The Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association and the Cornell ILR School Professional Programs are partnering to bring you a Collective Bargaining in Law Enforcement Virtual Workshop. Get hands-on training in collective bargaining with law enforcement unions and learn how to take maximum advantage of recent changes in Minnesota law governing disciplinary arbitrations.

Cornell ILR has been running practical workshops in labor relations for over forty years. It is not a typical university class or conference because it is heavily practice based, mixing expert lecture and best practices with small group work and simulations. Instructor Dan McCray is the Director of Labor Relations Programs and has worked with hundreds of students across dozens of organizations in the private and public sector in the United States, Latin America and Europe. (Click here to read his bio.)

Rather than using a case study, you will use your own issues and dynamics to begin the collective bargaining preparation process and learn and practice negotiation skills. At the end, you will have completed a good portion of the preparation process that you will be able to bring back to your organization. 

Because collective bargaining preparation is best done as team, departments are urged to enroll several members of their team in the workshop.

Who Could Benefit:

  • Chiefs of Police
  • City Managers
  • Deputies and other professionals involved in employee and labor relations
  • Human resources professionals
  • Municipal attorneys involved in collective bargaining

The virtual workshop is divided into six, three-hour Zoom sessions from 7:00am to 10:00am twice a week for three weeks starting October 27, 2020 through November 12, 2020.  

Class size will be kept small to allow for individual participation and feedback.

Upon completion, participants will receive a Collective Bargaining Immersion certificate from Cornell ILR School. 

Price is $995.00 per participant. 

Session #1: Tuesday, October 27, 2020 7:00am to 10:00am 
Establishing a labor strategy

Having the appropriate strategy is the key building block to effective bargaining.  Learn the key aspects of how to develop a strategy that drives organizational goals and objectives, including: 

  • Explore the difference between, and relationship among, organizational, labor, bargaining and negotiating strategies
  • How to use organizational challenges and opportunities to develop a labor strategy.
  • Understand the difference between a “forcing” and “fostering” strategy and the factors that go into each
Session #2: Thursday, October 29, 2020: 7:00am to 10:00am
The Steps of Preparation

Like all negotiations, collective bargaining is 20% tactics and 80% preparation.  While bad tactics can ruin good preparation, the best negotiator in the world cannot overcome poor preparation.  This session will focus on the nuts and bolts you need to properly prepare for bargaining.

Key topics include:  

  • Establishing the Organization’s Case
  • Analyzing the Unit
  • Understanding the Union
  • Managing and Supervising under the CBA and Past Practice
  • External Factors
  • Costing out the Contract
Session #3: Monday, November 2, 2020: 7:00am to 10:00am
Employee Discipline in the Union Environment

Although not the only issue, how employees are evaluated, investigated and disciplined for misconduct and poor performance will likely be an important focus of upcoming bargaining. 

As a result, we go deeper into the principles of Just Cause and Progressive Discipline to determine what needs to be bargained versus what can be managed

Key Topics include:

  • The Purpose of Discipline in a Unionized Environment
  • Elements of Just Cause
  • Off Duty Misconduct, Including Off-Duty Political Speech and Activity
  • Non-Disciplinary Just Cause
  • The Role of the Investigation
Session #4: Thursday, November 5, 2020: 7:00am to 10:00am
Establishing Goals and Objectives

After collecting information in the six-step preparation process, it is time to analyze the information in order to develop your key goals and objectives. 

Participants will:

  • Determine Scope of Objectives
  • Establish Priorities and Preferences
  • Anticipate Goals and Priorities of the Other Side
  • Evaluate Power, Leverage and Linkages
Session #5: Monday, November 9, 2020: 7:00am to 10:00am
Introduction to Negotiation Strategy and Techniques

Understanding the difference between competitive and collaborative negotiations, why you would choose one over the other, and how to be effective in each, is essential to executing your collective bargaining strategy. 

Key focus will be on:

  • What Makes a Good Negotiator
  • Competitive Bargaining: How to be a Good Haggler
  • Collaborative Bargaining: How to Engage in Rational Problem Solving
  • Crises/Hostage Negotiation Techniques Applied to Labor Relations
Session #6 Thursday, November 12, 2020: 7:00am to 10:00am
At-the-Table Protocols and Practices

Having completed the preparation process you are now ready to engage at the table.  This module discusses the protocols and practices of “traditional” collective bargaining and how you can use them to drive your bargaining objectives.

Key topics include:

  • Developing a Negotiating Strategy
  • The Phases of Traditional Collective Bargaining
  • Collaborative Structures and Processes
  • Organizing and Managing your Team
  • Dealing with Emotional and Political Dynamics


Click here to register for workshop