By Parija Kavilanz
In December, Costco workers in Norfolk, Virginia voted to unionize in what they said was a bid to improve working conditions at the wholesale retail chain.
Most companies tend to respond aggressively to organizing efforts, but Costco delivered a surprising response to the union win.
The group of 238 workers in Norfolk are set to join 18,000 Teamsters at Costco nationwide, according to the union. Specially, the workers said their hope in becoming Teamsters is to have a voice asking for higher wages, pension contributions, bonuses and more flexible attendance policy, among other workplace improvements.
While many other companies have adopted an antagonistic approach to their unionizing workers, Costco’s former CEO Craig Jelinek and current CEO Ron Vachris tag teamed on a memo sent to employees in late December in which they said they were “not disappointed in our employees; we’re disappointed in ourselves as managers and leaders.”
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