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Through this work, we hope to reach entrepreneurs and business leaders who don’t yet know about employee ownership, leaders and employees of employee-owned companies, advisers to entrepreneurs and businesses, and students and instructors of business and entrepreneurship.
MBA Course on Employee Ownership
The Beyster Institute has developed a comprehensive course on employee ownership for Rady School MBA students at UC San Diego titled “Topics in Corporate Governance: Techniques in Equity Compensation.”
Since its introduction in 2007, the course consistently receives excellent student reviews. We are pursuing wider applications of this important course and opportunities to offer it in a range of venues.
This two-unit elective skills-based course covers the full range of equity incentive and compensation techniques, from synthetic equity programs to leveraged ESOPs.
It takes students deep into the nature of equity as a currency available to businesses to achieve entrepreneurial goals; the nature of wealth creation and the rationale for sharing ownership; the techniques for creating a “stake in the outcome” for employees; the factors that go into creating an ownership culture; and the reasons it makes sense financially, personally and socially.
Employee Ownership Academic Case Studies
Through funding from the Foundation for Enterprise Development, the Beyster Institute develops employee-ownership-related academic case studies. The use of case studies as teaching tools is gaining popularity in higher education, especially business education. Through our connections with students and faculty, these studies help spread the employee ownership concept through the natural course of business education.
On their own, these case studies are compelling and raise many significant and widely applicable business issues. In addition, the case companies' core value of employee ownership plays an important role in the issues presented. We have partnered with nationally recognized case study writers to produce and publish these studies, including Dave Rosenthal of University of Miami, Ohio and Ann Lawrence of San Jose State University.
The Experiential Classroom at OSU, Tulsa
Thanks to support from the Foundation for Enterprise Development, the Beyster Institute participates in the Experiential Classroom, a faculty development program for business and entrepreneurship instructors from across the nation. The program promotes state-of-the-art approaches to teaching entrepreneurship through experiential learning, incorporating case studies and business plans. Through this program, the Beyster Institute encourages educators to incorporate into their curricula the tools and techniques that facilitate employee ownership in entrepreneurial ventures.
The Beyster Institute sponsors a dedicated scholars program — a partnership with select business and entrepreneurship faculty who incorporate the Beyster Institute’s employee ownership curricular materials into their courses and provide feedback on their effectiveness in return for a small grant. We are grateful for their interest in employee ownership and pleased with the conceptual and geographical variety of situations in which our materials can be used.
2008-2009 Beyster Scholars
Professor Natasa Christodoulidou, California State University, Dominguez Hills
Professor James Ondracek, Minot State University, Minot, N.D.
Professor Frank Ridzi, Le Moyne College, Syracuse, N.Y.
Professor Robert Statchen, Western New England College Schools of Law & Business, Springfield, Mass. Robert is using our materials in a business clinic setting sponsored jointly by the School of Law and the School of Business at Western New England College. Our materials will be used in the classroom portion of the course, during which students develop skills needed to guide and advise entrepreneurs on creating and developing successful businesses. The practicum portion of the course allows those same students to use their skills in interactions with startup companies.
The Beyster Institute partners with community organizations to offer information and resources which communicate the ability of employee ownership to create real wealth opportunities for a broad cross-section of people; in turn having a deeper and more lasting effect on the communities in which they live.
One exemplary partner in this effort is Pacific Community Ventures, an investment bank which develops and invests in businesses providing economic gains to low- and moderate-income communities in California. The Beyster Institute has worked with PCV companies to introduce the many ways in which employee ownership can assist in the development and growth of entrepreneurial businesses.
Annie E. Casey Foundation Shared Ownership Project
2009 saw the completion of an exciting project sponsored by the Annie E. Casey Foundation and led by the Beyster Institute. (Read more about the outcomes here.) The Annie E. Casey Foundation aims to foster public policies, human-service reforms and community supports to meet the needs of society’s most at-risk constituents. The Shared Ownership Project explored the potential for broadening opportunities for low-income individuals through shared home ownership and shared business ownership.
The Beyster Institute was privileged to lead the work group on shared business ownership, which facilitated a unique dialogue among individual wealth creation experts from a range of perspectives. Work group members included advocates of community development, credit unions, worker cooperatives, employee ownership and effective financial, tax and credit management for those that most need such help. A series of three work group conferences resulted in the development of new initiatives to bring shared ownership techniques to inner city businesses; promote financial, tax and credit education among employees in employee-owned companies; and develop stronger working relationships among groups that work to help alleviate poverty.