Cultures of performance and reward in UK employee-owned business.

WREN, David. (2016). Cultures of performance and reward in UK employee-owned business. Doctoral, Sheffield Hallam University (United Kingdom)..

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Employee ownership has the potential to reduce the growing wage disparity experienced in recent years, however research into employee ownership is limited. The purpose of this thesis is to explore organisational culture within for-profit employee owned businesses (EOBs) in the UK. Specifically, it looks to compare how different ownership types might influence the culture. Three types are researched: cooperative (enterprises where workers jointly own and control a co-operative business), directly owned (where shares are personally owned by employees) and trust ownership (where shares are owned on behalf of employees through a trust). Performance management and reward management were researched as conduits to expose the underlying culture. Insights into these two areas of management within employee ownership are also exposed. As a cross comparison of culture within ownership types, it has not been done before so this research provides a unique contribution to knowledge. This study has implications for those organisations considering the transfer into employee ownership as well as those who are already employee owned. A qualitative, inductive and interpretive approach was taken. The research was carried out in two phases. Firstly, semi-structured interviews were performed with senior managers or human resources representatives of EOBs representing all three ownership types across the UK. This was followed by a more in-depth ethnographic phase within an example of each type, consisting of planned and informal interviews as well as participant observations involving employees from all levels of the organisations; managing directors through to "shop floor" workers. The data was analysed using a general thematic approach.The main outputs from this research are models of organisational culture for each of the three ownership types, as well as what is common to all the types of employee ownership observed. A shared theme of a high commitment culture, based on trust, openness and fun was seen in all the types. The research also adds to the understanding of performance and reward to show how the ownership types influence them. From this, advice to HR personnel is suggested for working in each of the distinct types.The research was carried out during a period of economic growth (late 2013 to early 2014), hence the findings may be affected by more severe economic pressure and more time could have been spent within a greater number of organisations. Hybrid forms of ownership are acknowledged and further investigation into them would be beneficial.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Thesis advisor - Ridley-Duff, Rory
Thesis advisor - Clark, Murray
Additional Information: Thesis (Ph.D.)--Sheffield Hallam University (United Kingdom), 2016.
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Sheffield Hallam Doctoral Theses
Depositing User: EPrints Services
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2018 11:01
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2021 13:25

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