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Owner operated businesses in upstate NY

Posted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:00 am
by loafergirl
I can't remember what i was watching but I heard about businesses that are owned BY the employees, and decisions for running the company are made by the employees (not a board of directors). Does anyone know what the proper name for these businesses are, or if there are any in Upstate New York? LOVE this concept. I can't tell you how many places I have worked for where there are problems at the worker level ignored by higher ups, and/or workers aren't productive because they don't give a sh*t about their jobs... The concept of earning a steady paycheck, directly profiting from your own labors with a group of people, and being able to effectively address problems with the business and/or your job without your concern getting misconstrued, stopped, forgotten, lost, or outright rejected on it's way through the chain of command - AWESOME.

Posted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:25 am
by Flack
I'm guessing the garbage plate place Aardvark took me and my family to qualifies.

Re: Owner operated businesses in upstate NY

Posted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 1:45 pm
by Retro
loafergirl wrote:I can't remember what i was watching but I heard about businesses that are owned BY the employees, and decisions for running the company are made by the employees (not a board of directors).
They're called Co-ops (Co-operatives) or Collectives and they are plentiful in Berkeley. For example there is:

http://www.missinglink.org/
http://cheeseboardcollective.coop/cheese_bakery

That are functioning businesses in Berkeley (they're completely employee owned and have a vetting period for new employees to be given a stake: usually its 6+ months and then requires a vote from the rest of the employees for them to be brought onboard) with relatively healthy business.

A number of housing / room & board co-ops also exist:

http://www.bsc.coop/ (Berkeley Student Co-op organization that represents 17 or so student owned & operated housing programs)
http://berkhouse.info/ (Senior Living Co-op)

Those are just from the top of my head and I know that Oregon, Washington and a few random states have strong co-op systems of one kind or another in place.

Re: Owner operated businesses in upstate NY

Posted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 10:59 am
by Tdarcos
loafergirl wrote:Does anyone know what the proper name for these businesses are,
Part of me wants to be funny and say "bankrupt," but the correct term is when the employees are the stockholders, there's usually a note in ads they run after the company's name saying "An Employee Owned Company."
The concept of earning a steady paycheck, directly profiting from your own labors with a group of people, and being able to effectively address problems with the business and/or your job without your concern getting misconstrued, stopped, forgotten, lost, or outright rejected on it's way through the chain of command - AWESOME.
When a couple of guys - or even more than a couple - decide to start a business together, it's called a "partnership." Of course, if you actually are stupid enough to USE a partnership instead of a corporation or LLC, you're just begging for one of the partners to realize they can loot the company then fly off to Brazil, and stick everyone else remaining with the bills!

Posted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 4:31 pm
by AArdvark
So if we all create the JC BBS company you'll be the first guy with a one way ticket to South America? Is that what you're saying?
See if I start making pi cases on a production scale...


THE
PROFIT MARGIN
AARDVARK

Posted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 8:30 pm
by Ice Cream Jonsey
AArdvark wrote:So if we all create the JC BBS company you'll be the first guy with a one way ticket to South America? Is that what you're saying?
See if I start making pi cases on a production scale...


THE
PROFIT MARGIN
AARDVARK
Hey, there is a glitch in the Pi case! Involving the cruddy shielding for HDMI cables! I'll send you and Flack a mail.

Posted: Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:13 am
by loafergirl
Thanks Retro- that was what I was looking for.

Posted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 8:37 am
by RetroRomper
My pleasure, Loafer.

I've also been active in the scene in various capacities (living in one a long time ago, owning a small part of one and now gardening in one) and so can probably provide insight if you have any specific questions.

Posted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 12:56 pm
by loafergirl
awesome sauce!

Posted: Tue Jan 07, 2014 7:24 am
by RetroRomper
I've discovered the shittiest co-op ever: an Art Gallery in the Mission District of SF.

Okay, here is the premise - an employee run and owned art gallery that gives everyone the opportunity to display their wares. Neat that a semi-prestigious place would give everyone a chance to be seen, right?

A few catches: on top of the normal 40% take in commission if the pieces on display sell, they charge $90 a month to rent the physical 2ft x 2ft or so display space AND you need to volunteer at the gallery for a certain number of hours each week.

I mean... Really?