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Gaining Steam in Scotland
Scotland has seen rapid growth of employee ownership
In Brief: Over the last several months, Scotland’s employee ownership movement has experienced significant growth.
The Details: During the last few months Scotland has seen an explosion in the employee ownership sector. Every week it seems a few new Scottish firms are taking the leap and adopting shared ownership into their business structure. Those making the switch vary broadly, from steel stockholding firms to accounting firms, and there are currently more than 170 employee owned companies in Scotland - with two more being added just this past week!
Why They’re Doing It: There are a variety of reasons Scottish business owners have chosen to adopt employee owned structures, but many cite a desire to maintain the integrity, continuity, and job security for employees at long standing firms, many of which are pillars of the community. The former owner of Alexander (Scotland) & Co. - whose transition just went public this week - said that transferring ownership to employees allowed him to retire “knowing that I have left the business in safe hands.”
Why It Matters: Pioneering firms and nations offer a chance for researchers and policy makers to obtain the necessary data and case studies to persuade more and larger firms to consider employee ownership. Some of the greatest barriers to greater employee ownership in countries like the United States is corporate fears over its effectiveness in practice. Examples like those in Scotland provide a blueprint for other companies to follow. In addition, many of Scotland’s transitions have come as a result of business owners retiring and wishing to leave the business in the hands of those they know and trust. As North America approaches its ‘silver tsunami’ of retiring business owners, countries like Scotland will offer examples of alternate routes for retiring business owners.
Go Deeper: Check out the original article here