Very few companies open up their share ownership to their employees and that is a shame. It is undoubtedly a solution for many companies to retain top performers for longer.
What about at EASI?
April 21 was a special day for us. A total of 51 colleagues then took the step of becoming shareholders in our company. Today, 302 employees work at EASI, 99 of whom are shareholders. That means that 33% or 1 in 3 employees at EASI is a partner in our company.
That is an impressive number, especially when you know that a study by EFES (European Federation of Employee Share Ownership) in 32 countries in Europe shows that only 3% of employees of listed companies are shareholders. Moreover, this mainly concerns top managers who are remunerated with shares.
What about in the rest of Europe?
With barely 42,380 employee shareholders, it is striking that very few Belgian companies open up share ownership to their employees. By way of comparison, in France almost 3 million employees hold shares in their company, while in Great Britain there are almost 2 million employee-shareholders. So you can speak of a huge difference with our neighboring countries.
What is the problem?
Why am I giving you the figures? Several companies today are faced with a young exit age. A positive retention policy has therefore gained in importance in recent years as a tool for a stronger position in the market. After all, retaining your staff is a better investment than the costs associated with selecting, recruiting or employees who leave your company. In other words, those who can reduce their employee turnover are looking at a powerful competitive advantage.
How to go about it?
With employee participation, companies possess a powerful key to keeping their best employees on board for a longer journey. Under the right conditions, you not only offer the locomotives of your company an adventure, you recognize their efforts, you offer them perspective, and you can let them share in your profits. At EASI, we also combine the latter with an annual collective bonus for all employees.
On our Instagram page at the Instagram TV section, you can also hear from our employees themselves why they find being a shareholder an interesting option.
Why you should bet on the group
Group interest always takes precedence over individual interest with us. Sharing is in our DNA. Our company does not belong to one person, our shared values enable us to create a culture that allows our people to connect their personal goals with those of our company. In this way, group interest also impacts our efficiency and internal strength to achieve our goals together.
How you can grow together
I think many will agree with me that happiness at work is a shared responsibility. Each generation today desires different specific aspects in their compensation package. As an employer, besides the fruit basket, the ping-pong table or your flexible remuneration package, you should also focus on non-financial elements. Elementary needs of which you know that when you apply them, every employee will be happier. Some examples are getting perspective, recognition, a safe environment, trust, room for participation ...
Unknown can be unloved, but still.... Employee participation can make a lot of these things tangible and possible to incorporate it into your way of working. It has already given our company wings, resulting in strong growth. Anyone looking for an innovative model to offer high-potentials more than an average job will undoubtedly find this model to be a solution for binding top performers for longer.