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Employee Ownership: Evaluating the Factors Contributing to Successful Employee Engagement

Rowley, Heather (2014) Employee Ownership: Evaluating the Factors Contributing to Successful Employee Engagement. PhD thesis, University of York.

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This interpretive study explores employee engagement in employee-owned organisations and the factors that contribute to successful employee engagement. The thesis considers; the role of employee ownership in facilitating employee engagement, what practices are understood to be most effective in securing engagement and which are most practical, obstacles to engagement and potential solutions, and how employee engagement supports and sustains ownership. Concepts from employee engagement and employee ownership literatures are brought together to explain the existence of employee engagement in employee-owned organisations. Adopting a qualitative approach to research, three employee-owned organisations formed the basis for data collection. Semi-structured interviews, focus groups, and reflective research diaries, were utilised to capture a range of experiences and perceptions. Data was analysed and presented in a narrative format with key themes identified using thematic analysis. It was found that in comparison to models of engagement such as Alfes et al. (2010), employee ownership was a key factor of engagement due to the presence of psychological ownership (Pierce et al., 1991; Van Dyne and Pierce, 2004). This factor added an additional dynamic to engagement as the meaning of work was influenced by employee ownership. However, ownership was also found to hindered engagement due to inflexibilities with ownership processes and the existence of free-riders. Family culture was present in the organisations which drove employees ownership values (Kruse et al., 2003), although it was found that this was ineffective in dealing with perceived under-performers which affected engagement. Social, affective, and intellectual engagement (Alfes et al. 2010), and vigour, dedication, and absorption Schaufeli et al. (2006) were found to be influenced by the presence of employee ownership. The study concludes that employee engagement enhances the experience of employee ownership, and employee ownership influences employee engagement. Evidence presented confirms the claims of Postlethwaite et al. (2005) and Matrix Evidence (2010) that employee ownership is influential to employee engagement.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Employee engagement; Employee ownership
Academic Units: The University of York > The York Management School
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.651274
Depositing User: Miss Heather Rowley
Date Deposited: 17 Jun 2015 13:07
Last Modified: 08 Sep 2016 13:32
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/9200

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