Making a Case (and Chairs, and Desks) for Employee Ownership: KI Furniture - CLEO Skip to main content


Employee-owned businesses tend to outperform their competitors, a growing body of research shows. According to the National Center of Employee Ownership, businesses with employee ownership models grow sales and employment at a faster rate than businesses without such programs. Employee-owned firms also perform better than their counterparts during recessions, per research from Georgetown University.

For companies looking to achieve employee ownership, one popular choice is an employee stock ownership plan, or ESOP. This model fits the manufacturing sector well. One in five U.S. companies with employee stock ownership plans is a manufacturer. Employee ownership models foster a company culture of transparency; strengthen employee engagement and trust; and offer financial benefits for employers and employees.

My company, Green Bay, Wisconsin-based furniture manufacturer KI, is a testament to the positive impact that employee ownership can have on a manufacturing company.