Career Advice

7 Reasons to Choose a Job at an Employee-Owned Business

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In this article, we will be delving into the concept of employee-owned businesses and the reasons why they may be a suitable choice for you…

 The year 2023 has brought about an employee-focused world, resulting in heightened expectations from employees. This has led many individuals to actively search for job opportunities in businesses that adopt an employee-owned model, which has resulted in an increase in the sale of shares to an employee ownership trust.

As this business model becomes more and more popular, we’re going to be exploring some of the reasons for choosing to work at an employee-owned business.

Why work for a boss when you can work for yourself? Discover the top 7 reasons why employee-owned businesses are the way to go for job satisfaction and financial rewards. #employeeowned #jobperks #careeradviceClick To Tweet

What is an Employee-Owned Business?

A business that is owned by its employees enables the staff to acquire ownership of the company by purchasing or receiving shares as gifts. Some well-known examples of UK employee-owned businesses are John Lewis and Richer Sounds. There are a number of benefits to this model for employers including improved staff motivation, increased staff retention and the potential ability to liquidate cash for use in scaling the company to provide even further benefits for all.

What Are the Benefits of This Model for Employees?

There are a number of reasons for getting a job at an employee-owned business and in this section, we’ll take a look at some of these:

1.   Financial Incentives

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Photo by maitree rimthong:

One of the main reasons for working for this type of company is financial. In many cases, including that of John Lewis, employees (known as partners) receive a share of the company’s annual profits – which for some can be significant.

2.   Empowerment

Within a traditional business model, employees rarely get a say in the company’s activities or the direction in which it moves in. With an employee ownership model, owning even a tiny share of the company empowers employees to have a say in its future.

3.    Autonomy

By sharing ownership of the business or brand, employees can feel more than just workers; they can feel like valued members of the team with the ability to shape not only their own future, but also that of the company.

4.   Job Satisfaction

When working within an employee ownership business, the actual job that an employee performs may well be identical to the one that they would in a traditional model – but the difference is the mindset. Going to work and performing your duties with the knowledge that, rather than just working for somebody else, you’re actually working for yourself too can feel empowering.

5.   Security

Employee ownership can provide a level of future security when working for a prosperous business, as the value of the employees’ shares may rise over time. This increase in value can be attributed to the rise in job satisfaction, which can positively impact their productivity and efficiency.

6.   Motivation


Photo by Anna Tarazevich:

When working for a company that an individual has shares in, employees will usually tend to work harder, more proactively and more creatively. In the long term, this can improve the employee’s career prospects, leading to them owning further shares in the company.

Former CEO of employee-owned company Richer Sounds, Julian Richer, said, “People are not machines. If you treat them well, you will see so much more out of them. You will sleep better at night if you run a good business. It’s good for society if you treat staff well and pay your taxes and, thirdly, your business will benefit”.

7.   Morale

Studies show that staff working in employee-owned companies are generally not just happier but healthier too, making it a compelling reason to look for employment opportunities in such businesses.

Is employee ownership right for you?

There’s no doubt that working for an employee-owned business can have some fantastic benefits but it’s worth noting that employee-owned is by no means ‘one size fits all’. As with any type of job, it’s a good idea to properly read all of the terms and conditions to make sure that it’s a good fit for you.

If, however, you’re looking to create a long-term relationship with an employer, this can be an excellent model which will not only provide job satisfaction but will also be potentially lucrative for you long term.

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