Companies We Keep: Employee Ownership and the Business of Community and Place, 2nd Edition


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In , 50, businesses changed hands. In , that number rose to , Projections call for , ownership transitions in Employee ownership—in both the philosophical and the practical sense—is gathering steam as businesses change hands, and Abrams examines some of the many ways this is done. Together, these principles reveal communities of enterprise as a potent force of change that can—and will— improve the way Americans do business.

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John Abrams thinks the following: You can remove the unavailable item s now or we'll automatically remove it at Checkout. In , that number rose to , We think we are crafting a company to keep. Celebrating the Spirit of Craft. Now, in Companies We Keep , the revised and expanded edition of his work, John Abrams further develops his idea that companies flourish when they become centers of interdependence, or "communities of enterprise. It also offers useful concrete examples of other companies that have modeled unusual and encouraging humane business practices.

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Projections call for , ownership transitions in Employee ownership—in both the philosophical and the practical sense—is gathering steam as businesses change hands, and Abrams examines some of the many ways this is done. Together, these principles reveal communities of enterprise as a potent force of change that can—and will— improve the way Americans do business. We all need the South Mountain Company--and its human lessons.

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Library Journal- In Abrams's The Company We Keep , he wrote about his residential building and design company, South Mountain, and of his efforts to grow gradually and sustainably. In that book as well as this revised and expanded edition, Abrams presents a chapter on each of the eight "cornerstone principles" of sustainable businesses, including sharing ownership, cultivating workplace democracy, and celebrating the spirit of craft.

In the new edition, he expands his vision beyond his own company with its somewhat unusual Martha's Vineyard location to companies across the United States. His conversational style and instructive anecdotes paint a rosy picture of employee ownership, but he also cautions that a company's transition away from reliance on a single leader can take many years.

Companies We Keep: Employee Ownership and the Business of Community and Place, 2nd Edition

The overall message is positive, emphasizing local development and "challenging the gospel of growth. Part memoir and part examination of a new business model, the release of The Company We Keep marked the debut of an important new voice in the literature of American business. Most of the baby boomer generation--the owners of millions of American businesses-- will retire within the next two decades. Employee ownership--in both the philosophical and the practical sense--is gathering steam as businesses change hands, and Abrams examines some of the many ways this is done.

Together, these principles reveal communities of enterprise as a potent force of change that can--and will-- improve the way Americans do business. In , South Mountain Company was restructured to become employee-owned, and so began the new adventure that led Abrams to write his first book, The Company We Keep: With added experience and research, Abrams has revised the book, renamed Companies We Keep: Employee Ownership and the Business of Community and Place , so that it can better serve as a primer for employee-ownership.