Odd that this hasn’t happened naturally, isn’t it?

The partnership economy
By 2030, we want the economy to be guided by a new social partnership: between
responsible businesses, a smart and accountable state, strong trade unions and a
vibrant civil society. In 2030, most successful businesses will recognise that they
have obligations to their employees, stakeholders and communities, and not just
to their shareholders. The focus on short-term ‘shareholder value’ will have been
replaced by a commitment to investment and long-term success. Employers and
employees will acknowledge their mutual responsibilities, where the recognition
of workers’ rights, voice and creativity is rewarded by greater productivity and
pride in work. The public are no longer considered solely as passive ‘consumers’
but rather as ‘economic citizens’ endowed with rights to share in ownership and
public decision-making, meaningful opportunities to create their own businesses,
and responsibilities to contribute to the economy’s success. As a result, the UK
has one of the widest range of business forms in the world, including socially
owned, mutual and cooperative enterprises of various kinds.

If all of this did make businesses more productive then businesses organised in this manner would already have outcompeted those that are not so organised.

They haven’t – so, what’s wrong with the idea then?

6 thoughts on “Odd that this hasn’t happened naturally, isn’t it?”

  1. And Bubble UP in all the water fountains.

    ‘‘economic citizens’ endowed with rights to share in ownership and public decision-making’

    Is there really someone on the planet who thinks this could work?

  2. Waitrose is a partnership. Their prices are eye-watering.

    I like my supermarkets to be run for the benefit of their customers, not for the benefit of their former employees’ pension fund.

  3. Are we sure it hasn’t already happened (other than perhaps the strong trade union part which aren’t known to improve productivity)? Most companies (at least in the tech/white collar type areas) seem to profess (to various degrees) the importance of anti-corruption, ethical and environmental practices. On the whole, compared to victorian times and probably much of the 20th century, they tend to offer employees benefits that go beyond the legal minimums, tend to have career progression programmes that listen to employee contributions, and offer bonuses of various types. Many companies do sponsor local community events or support local charities. Much of this of course is driven by the dual needs to attract the best employees (who value a good work environment) and to attract customers (PR is important).

  4. Companies in a competitive environment will offer benefits to their employees to keep them happy/motivated. In the beneficial absence of strong trade unions these will focussed on the things that the actual workers and the patriarchal/patronising management think are important.
    Whoever thinks that the general public has a right to share in the ownership of my self-employed single-worker business can – well I am sure that each reader can supply his/her own opinion. I though theft was a crime in England…

  5. Bloke in Wales in Dorset

    Most companies (at least in the tech/white collar type areas) seem to profess (to various degrees) the importance of anti-corruption, ethical and environmental practices.

    I can’t speak for anyone else, but company websites trumpeting their ethical and environmental feelz definitely add to the ‘con’ column when I’m weighing up competing offers. I’d much rather have any company I’m working for put more cash in their contractors’ pockets.

    Much of this of course is driven by the dual needs to attract the best employees (who value a good work environment) and to attract customers (PR is important).

    I suspect a lot of it is driven by the pointless bureaucracy departments (HR, I’m looking at you) desperately trying to feel useful.

  6. “Whoever thinks that the general public has a right to share in the ownership”

    In 1900, anyone supposing to implement general public ownership would never be seen again.

    The Good Old Days, indeed!

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