From less than 300 in 1974, the number of employee-owned companies in the U.S. has grown to over 11,500 today. Why is this form of corporate structure becoming so popular? Because it’s profitable—for businesses, employees and the customers they serve.
An employee who feels a sense of ownership has a unique motivation to perform well and take her or his responsibilities seriously. All the management speeches or maneuvers in the world can’t hold a candle to knowing your own effort can create real financial security for your family. The skill, reliability and dedication you put into your work will, if your company profits, pay off as your shares in the company grow.
A dream revived
Many employees in our culture have had the experience of being milked and manipulated throughout their working lives to produce profits they’ll never meaningfully share in. For many workers, secure, stable jobs, unions and pensions have disappeared and the traditional American dream has become a nightmare of disappointment. For too many, burnout and broken health have become more likely than a safe and happy retirement.
Employee owners are creating a different narrative, a story arc that promises better outcomes for their years of hard work. They get no pass on performance and are still measured on the quality and value of their contributions…but they are empowered.
Employee ownership offers a brighter future. And that is the most empowering motivation of all.
The difference for consumers
How does all this matter to you, as a customer? When you order a product from an employee-owned company, that product is going to go through all the same stages it would if the company was owned by a “soulless” corporation. The product has to be invented and marketed, so you’ll know it exists in the first place. Then it has to be manufactured, packaged, and delivered—to you or your nearby store.
The difference is, when an employee who markets, sells, builds or ships that product is an employee owner—this person has more care, more pride, and more investment in YOUR happiness. Selfless and self-motivated workers abound in all kinds of companies, employee-owned or not. But those who know their efforts carry the promise of real reward are extra-motivated to take great care of their customers.
At Savvy Rest, our customers’ expectations of a positive experience with us and our products is why we, as employee owners, feel so engaged in our work. In every call we take, product we make, box we pack, or word we write…ownership is our own skin in the game.