by: Carleton, Tamara
Source: National Center for Employee Ownership
Can your company truly build and sustain that early founding feeling, in which everyone continues to feel vested as the scale of the organization changes? Drawing from a research study funded by the Foundation for Enterprise Development, the author discovered that federal government contractor Science Applications International Corporation, known as SAIC, provides an astounding example of ownership culture at work three decades after its inception.
Ultimately, SAIC created its own private Silicon Valley-every employee acts as a founder, everyone shares a focus on steady growth, and ownership and its rewards are broadly shared. Management at other organizations can adopt three big lessons from SAIC in order to bring the wealth-generating power of Silicon Valley inside their own walls. Lesson 1 is to treat employees as entrepreneurs. SAIC employees had actual ownership stakes in their mini enterprises, driving them to perform. Lesson 2 is to create opportunities for ownership. Beyond the financial stake, SAIC employees identified strongly with the founder role. Lesson 3 is to renew the stake of ownership. Not only were SAIC employees rewarded financially at regular intervals, they also heard regularly from their managers about the rewards and responsibilities of ownership-all of which reinforced the foundation for a culture of ownership.
Publication Date: 2012-01-01