- When maximizing profits isn't the only goal, companies can actually work better. Under worker-run management structures, co-ops might avoid the usual friction between bosses giving orders from above, and staff misunderstanding or disputing decisions or resisting unfair work burdens from below. Fusing the workforce and management streamlines operations and saves energy otherwise sunk into training and monitoring the workforce.
- Can Treating Low-Wage Workers Well Become The Hot New Business Strategy?
Michelle Chen, the Nation / Portside
Now you can follow Evergreene Digest on Twitter.
A baker takes freshly-baked bread from the oven at King Arthur Flour Company, a worker-owned business in Norwich, Vermont. AP Photo / Toby Talbot // the Nation
March 31, 2016 | Imagine an economy without bosses. It's not a utopian vision but a growing daily reality for many enterprises. A close analysis of the performance of worker-owned cooperative firms-companies in which workers share in management and ownership-shows that, compared to standard top-down firms, co-ops can be a viable, even superior way of doing business.
The term "co-op" evokes images of collective farming or crunchy craft breweries. But Virginie Perotin of Leeds University Business School synthesized research on "labor-managed firms" in Western Europe, the United States and Latin America, and found that, aside from the holistic social benefits of worker autonomy, giving workers a direct stake in managing production enables a business to operate more effectively. On balance, Perotin concludes, "worker cooperatives are more productive than conventional businesses, with staff working `better and smarter' and production organized more efficiently."
Michelle Chen is a contributing writer for the Nation.
Full story …
Can Treating Low-Wage Workers Well Become The Hot New Business Strategy? Jessica Leber, Co.Exist
Aetna, Gap, Starbucks—even Walmart—are making moves to pay and treat their employees better. Are we seeing the start of an age of friendlier big business, or is it all just PR?