The Experiential Classroom has been a great platform from which to make the case that employee ownership ought to be a fundamental part of any curriculum in business or entrepreneurship. It also reveals the incredible power of case teaching. Case teaching helps students develop a broad understanding of a subject area, and it offers a way for business and entrepreneurship professors to easily integrate new concepts like employee ownership into their programs.
We have spent the last year developing two employee-ownership-related case studies which, through our connections with students and faculty, have the potential to spread the employee ownership concept farther and faster than almost any other method we can imagine. These studies offer great business education opportunities and raise many significant and widely applicable business issues.
These first two studies, for example, involve issues such as the need to expand the manufacturing capability of a high-tech firm to accommodate higher volume product lines and the need to reconsider the total cost of an employee benefit package in a softening economy. On their own, these case studies are compelling and interesting, but both of the companies studied also share employee ownership as a core value, and that shared core value plays an important role in the issues presented.