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Leading In ESOP Company

Leadership is critical in all organizations, but when you add the element of employee ownership it elevates the importance. When a company shifts the mindset of its workers from employee to employee owner, the scrutiny of leaders is more pronounced.

When everyone is asked to step up and act like an owner, then the top leaders better be prepared for valid questions and challenges to the status quo. This shift can happen in a very short period of time and many leaders are not prepared to handle this shift in organizational and individual behavior. There are many programs and books that focus on leadership development, but not in an employee owned company context.

The good news is that there is a program that has been around for several years that focuses on leadership in an ESOP company. The program is conducted by the University of Pennsylvania and is called "Leading in Ownership Setting - Program for CEO's". It is a stellar program and I can personally speak to the value of the program as I was member of the planning committee and a participant in the first class.

The program challenges individuals in how they view leadership in multiple ways. More importantly, participants create a peer group that they can stay connected to for ideas and help with future challenges.

If you are looking to implement employee ownership in your company, this program can help you prepare for the challenges and joys of leading a company of employee owners. Make the investment in yourself and you will receive payback for the rest of your career.

-Victor Aspengren

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