This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Is John Lewis The Best Company In Britain To Work For

3162 words - 13 pages

Is John Lewis the best company in Britain to work for?
It is owned by its employees – or partners – who have a say in how it is run, and receive a share of the profits. Surely this is the way every organisation should be run . . .
* Jon Henley
* The Guardian, Tuesday 16 March 2010
* Article history

John Lewis's flagship store in central London Photograph: Alex Segre / Alamy/Alamy
It's just before opening time on bonus day at John Lewis and, boy, are we excited. Up and down the country, the 69,000 people who work for the nation's favourite retailer are gathered, impatient. At head office in London's Victoria, in 28 John Lewis department stores from ...view middle of the document...

He holds the card triumphantly high: 15%. "Magic," cries Lee Bowra from childrenswear. "Absolutely brilliant. That's our deposit complete. We can buy a house."
In the depths of what everyone keeps telling us is the deepest financial and economic crisis since the second world war, John Lewis plainly has not done badly (operating profit up 20%, if you didn't read the business pages last week). That's partly because it stacks its shelves with goods of a certain quality, and sells them to a certain kind of customer with a certain standard of service. After all, Middle England loves John Lewis: if a product is on sale in one of its stores, you know you can trust it. Plus you can be sure you'll be served by someone who really knows what they're talking about and, most unusually of all, is eager to help.
Partly, it's down to that splendidly arcane Edwardian slogan: Never Knowingly Undersold. It also has something to do with the reason everyone was cheering so loudly last Thursday: unlike other high-street names (unlike most companies, in fact), John Lewis is owned by a trust on behalf of its employees, each of whom has a say in its running and a share in its profits. This is Britain's largest and most venerable example of worker co-ownership. Its avowed purpose is not the making of shedloads of short-term profit to placate a bunch of remote and greedy shareholders, but "the happiness of all its members, through their worthwhile and satisfying employment in a successful business" (that's from the partnership's constitution. It bears re-reading).
And at a time when the limits of the more traditional capitalist model of shareholder ownership stand cruelly exposed, John Lewis's ongoing success is increasingly prompting all three main political parties to point to it as a possible template – for other companies, for schools, hospitals, even local councils.
But what's it like to work for an outfit run like this? Well, it's worth noting that there are some partners who weren't at work last week to hear the 2010 bonus announced. They were off staying at one of the five holiday centres the partnership owns and runs for the benefit of its employees. These include a 16th-century castle with private beach on Brownsea island in Poole harbour, an imposing Victorian pile on the shores of Lake Windermere, a 24-room outdoor and watersports club on Lake Bala in north Wales, and a country house hotel in 4,000 rolling acres of Hampshire.
Nicola McRoberts and her partner, Pedro Pereira, are staying in one of the 12 modern wooden lodges on the Leckford Estate, near Stockbridge. The self-catering cabins, popular with young families, have two or three bedrooms and are smartly furnished with leather sofas and bedlinen that a John Lewis shopper might recognise. Nicola works in the stationery department in Welwyn, and Pedro is a Waitrose chef. They're here for five nights, at a cost of £176. "It's a good company to work for," says Pedro. "I didn't realise how good until I...

Other Papers Like Is John Lewis the Best Company in Britain to Work for

Reading Is the Best Way for Student

2258 words - 10 pages knowledge and practice activities, but can have their own understanding and perspective creative activities. After reading one or two class discussions after the event, students will be interested in reading slowly aroused. For example, we let the students read the following paragraph in English: This is just to say I have eaten the plums that were in the icebox and which you were probably

It Is Okay to Cry for Work

656 words - 3 pages the workplace. Second, managers can use humor and give their employees small tokens of appreciation for work well done. Also, when leaders themselves are in good moods, group members are more positive; as a result, they cooperate better (Robbins 2013, p113). Third, hold activities to build up relationships, make employees feel part of member in a team.

Is Best Buy the Best?

1374 words - 6 pages competitors. According to Sun, “Best Buy said tough competition in China is responsible for its lackluster international performance as local online retailers have expanded aggressively”. So what is the company using as innovation to recoup its international losses? Innovation Best Buy had been hurting as a company for several years with the online market industry taking over, and in order to retrieve some of the loss, the CEO. was replaced

To What Extent Is an E-Commerce Strategy the Best Way for Businesses to Increase Their Profits? (40 Marks)

1432 words - 6 pages users were affected by the events. With More than 15,600 bank account numbers and sort codes were stolen, the company said. The scandal resulted in a £35 million pound loss for the company. This points shows how e-commerce can provide huge threats to companies despite the number of opportunities it provides too. These big risks that come alongside e-commerce mean that e-commerce is not necessarily the best way for businesses to increase their

Is Britain Still The Awkward Partner In Europe?

1725 words - 7 pages shape moulded by others" [Baker, D.; 2003]. But, as Britain is not an initial European Monetary Union (EMU) membership, it is very difficult for it to become one of the European leading states. "...the only way to be a leading country in Europe is to belong to the euro-zone." [Strauss-kahn, D.; 1998]. The fact that Blair is pro-European made people feel that Britain is less the Europe's awkward partner, that there is a willingness to make up for

How Important It Is for a Woman to Work?

5938 words - 24 pages When we speak of women’s work we initially think of the work that women do at home, their unpaid domestic labour. The old catchcry ‘women’s work is never done’ refers to the hundreds of household chores for which women are assumed to take total responsibility. However there is also another sort of ‘women’s work’ – the work done by women in the paid workforce, which is characterised by the fact that it tends to be done only by women. Although the

'There Is No Convincing Case for a Written Consitution in Britain' Discuss

608 words - 3 pages change in our constitution would create a positive impact or whether our current system is the best and there are no convincing arguments against it. The fact we have parliamentary system means that there is no need for a written constitution. Parliamentary sovereignty means that parliament have the highest legal authority in the UK. Because of our democratic system in the UK we have to power to elect our government and therefore this puts limits

A Hybrid Approach to Ethics Is the Best Approach?

768 words - 4 pages deficiency. However, a popular criticism of Virtue Ethics is that virtues may differ from community to community due to the problem of can we really say what one person see’s as being virtuous is the same as another? Thus showing how a hybrid approach to Ethics wouldn’t necessarily be the best approach since to be virtuous can be seen as being subjective, which is supported by Louden’s view of Virtue Ethics not having any specific guidelines for

Assess the Arguments and Evidence for the View That Britain Is Becoming a Secular Society

1001 words - 5 pages Assess the arguments and evidence for the view that Britain is becoming a secular society Sociologists argue that in Britain, there has been an overall steady decline in the importance of religion since the 19th century, which has led some sociologists to suggest there was a ‘golden age’ of religiosity. Many sociologists have proposed explanations for the secularisation thesis, for example Weber, Berger and Bruce. However Postmodernists

To What Extent Was Empire a Source of Pride for People in Britain

1551 words - 7 pages qualities such as being heroic, standing up to danger, all qualities which the British society would have recognised as being virtues of the Empire. John Mackenzie comments on how popular art was used as a propaganda tool. ‘ Popular culture and imperialism may be difficult for the historian to disentangle but it is quite possible to speculate that popular art was just as important as war reporting or popular fiction in helping to provide confirmation and

A Company Is (Morally) Allowed Within the Legal Framework to Gain Unlimited Access to Consumer’s Privacy for the Use of Customer Loyalty Programmes

855 words - 4 pages A company is (morally) allowed within the legal framework to gain unlimited access to consumer’s privacy for the use of customer loyalty programmes. As a consumer, loyalty to a company is largely based on trust. We expect the company to not abuse it. Firms have the responsibility of delivering quality- this refers both to the product that they deliver, and the customer relations – in order to maintain loyalty. In order to achieve this

Related Essays

The Best Places To Work Essay

4034 words - 17 pages not just known for its innovative breakthroughs in the technology front, but is also known for its unique culture and innovative Human Resource (HR) policies. In a survey conducted by BusinessWeek magazine, Google was the most sought after company by college students, MBAs, women, engineers, and diverse individuals. Google ranked 1st on the 10th annual ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’ list of Fortune, a well-known international business magazine

The Hiring Process For Abc Inc. The Company Is Having Problems Getting New Hires Ready To Work. What Can Be Done To Make To Process Run Smoothly?

892 words - 4 pages The Hiring Process for ABC Inc.Comm 215IntroductionABC Inc. must change the way they manage their hiring process. A way must be created to effectively hire new employees. The challenge is for ABC Inc. to create an effective automated hiring process. Being a small business, it is critical for ABC Inc. to get the right person in the job the first time around and it has to be someone who can work effectively with the Operations Specialist. A wrong

Analysis For Best Buy Company

9866 words - 40 pages Mission Support of the Mission Statement Best Buy strategy is to fulfill customers’ needs by selling a wide variety of electronic gadgets, movies, music, computers, and appliances. In addition to selling products Best Buy offers installation and maintenance services, technical support, and subscriptions for cell phone and Internet services. Moreover, the company has reliable hardware, software, service, and support. . Best Buy makes sure that

To What Extent Is Targeting Emerging Markets For Sales The Best Way For Businesses To Achieve Major Growth In Their Profits?

579 words - 3 pages became the best-selling product of its kind in India. A disadvantage of trying to do business in emerging economies is the challenge in overcoming cultural risks. Cultural perspectives, rituals and product usage vary around the world and when new economies emerge, they may have different expectations than ones in which a business is established. A UK business, for instance, may struggle with understanding how to do business in China and Brazil