As one of the Fastest 50 Growing Private Companies, ESP CEO, Bob Hildreth, took some time last week to share his thoughts on the benefits of having employees who act like owners and how to make it happen. Some of his answers were published in last week’s Business Journal. Check out what he had to say below.
-Excerpt from the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal January 18, 2013.
MSPBJ: How do you make employees feel like “owners”?
It starts with equality. I make a point to express that no single person is more important than anyone else and that we work with each other, not for anyone. There’s no big corner office for me or anyone else. The whole team is involved in the interviewing process for new employees and big decisions about the company’s future.
MSPBJ: What characteristics do you see in employees who act like owners?
They feel free to share their ideas, are confident, aren’t afraid to speak their minds and are direct in their communication. Additionally, they are passionate, independent and self-directed.
MSPBJ: What is the greatest benefit to having employees who act like owners?
‘Owners’ care about the business and want it to succeed as much as I do and tend to work diligently without needing to be managed.
MSPBJ: Do you have any formal programs to try to cultivate an ownership culture?
- Our off-site quarterly all-company meetings cover our financial data and progress towards goals. We spend over half the time soliciting advice in our brainstorm about various aspects of the company’s growth, future and day-to-day operations.
- Everyone is a part of our leadership team. We’re structured with small teams of people to promote leadership and ownership.
- All employees get a chance to train the rest of the team on best practices or tips for staying productive at work at our weekly staff meetings.