Spreading the Word:
Employee Ownership in Business Education
2009 was a great year for the Beyster Institute. We hosted successful conferences and seminars and we helped about 25 companies develop employee ownership programs of their own. Perhaps even more importantly, we developed a number of new teaching materials for free distribution to professors at universities around the country. In promoting employee ownership, no constituency is more important than those who teach the next generations of business leaders and advisers. In order for employee ownership to gain more acceptance as a business practice in the U.S., it must become a standard of business education so that future leaders and advisers can pass the idea along.
We are very proud of these educational offerings:
Full Credit MBA-Level Courses
Students at the Rady School of Management are among the first of a growing number of graduate students who can take advantage of two elective courses designed and offered by our staff. MGT 219 ï¿½ Techniques in Equity Compensation offers a survey of employee ownership methods and their advantages for owners, companies and employees alike. MGT 269 ï¿½Creating a High-Performing Workplace introduces students to strategies and practices for developing effective company cultures. These courses give Rady students opportunities to explore management styles that will give them significant advantages throughout their careers. Our course materials have been utilized by over 50 professors around the country in the last two years and are finding their way into classrooms across the country.
Produced with Professor Larry Bennett of Syracuse University, the ESOP module is a scalable presentation that can serve as all or part of an overview of employee ownership that fits into virtually any related business curriculum. Applications of the module thus far have included courses in family business, tax law, business succession and human resources.
Academic Case Studies
Modern business instruction largely relies on the use of academic case studies. These studies illustrate the business decision-making process by asking students to consider real situations. As of the end of 2009, the Institute has completed work on four such case studies addressing issues such as strategizing for growth and responding to unrequested offers to sell. Our cases examine real business issues in the context of employee-owned companies. Initial reactions to the cases are very positive.
Beyster Institute Scholars Grants
Through 2008 and 2009, seven professors from universities around the country received grants to assist in incorporating employee ownership materials into their curricula. These ï¿½Beyster Scholarsï¿½ have incorporated employee ownership concepts into a wide variety of subject areas including business, entrepreneurship, political science, law and human resources.
Of course, we also continue our online seminar series, annual conference, executive development courses (notably the Employee Ownership Management course we offer each fall), and outreach to other academic and non-profit groups. Our work within the academic community, however, is critical in the effort to bring employee ownership into mainstream business practices.