Employee Share Ownership Day
SFA members attended this year’s Employee Share Ownership Day (ESOD) put together by the Irish Proshare Association, where the benefits of offering employee ownership programmes were discussed. The Key Employee Engagement Programme (KEEP) is an example of one such programme that allows employers to reward key employees by giving them a stake in the company.
According to the speakers at ESOD, the benefits of employee ownership are quite clear. Employees who have a financial stake in the company are more motivated and productive than those who do not. However, the benefits go beyond merely financial incentives. Employees who have a stake in the company they work for also have a sense of intrinsic motivation that goes beyond reward driven. One speaker brought up a story of a postman was supplied with a truck and two polo shirts. Their attitude towards their job was apathetic at best. Speeding through deliveries, neglecting truck maintenance, ditching packages as quick as they could, etc. When the same postman bought their own truck and had an ownership in the company, their entire attitude changed. They cared about the work that they did, they maintained their truck and washed it daily, wore a tie to work every day. They had a sense of pride about the job they were doing.
Share ownership leads to staff retainment and engagement, which is currently one of the most important challenges for small businesses in Ireland. As the economy closes in on full employment, keeping and attracting talent is one of the most important things a company can do. Being an early adopter of share ownership will put your small business leagues ahead of your competitors and help you compete with multinational enterprises.
For more information on KEEP and other employee share ownership programmes please contact Linda and the Small Firms Association at firstname.lastname@example.org.