Harvard Business prof calls on US unions to be more hands-on role with workers

Harvard Business School professor Rebecca Henderson called on U.S. unions to play a more hands-on role in managing workers in an interview that aired Tuesday on Hill.TV's "Rising." 

"I think one of the ways in which some of the American unions got off the rails is they thought of themselves as 'sit back.' You know, 'I'm going to take my cut, but management runs the firm,'" Henderson told host Krystal Ball. 

"I think it's fairly clear that going forward we need to move to a place where unions, or some kind of labor representation, jumps right in, feels themselves very much a part of what's going on, takes full responsibility, and works together with management to build the kind of progress and growth that we need," she continued. 

Henderson teaches a course at Harvard called "Reimagining Capitalism," where she and students discuss the way it can be improved as an economic system, particularly in the U.S.  

"I talk particularly about alternative forms of worker representation," she said. "I talk about workers' councils, the kind of systems that they have in Denmark or Germany, where unions very much see themselves as a partner in building a healthy economy." 

— Julia Manchester