Saturday, January 05, 2008

Business as Unusual

One fine example of democracy in the workplace that I recently witnessed firsthand was off Lakeshore Avenue in Oakland, CA. ARIZMENDI is a bakery cooperative that was inspired by an earlier bakery in California, the CHEESEBOARD, that wanted to experiment with democratic decision-making and horizontal management. Though foreign to most in this country the longevity of these experiments says something about their viability.

A couple of years ago, Troutsky introduced me to a delicious beer, FULLSAIL, that is made in a worker-owned factory. Reading the labels and packaging is often entertaining itself. The workers sound very pleased with their work situation as well.

The viability of employee-owned, democratic workplaces seems less a novelty these days than one might think. The U.S. Federation of Worker Cooperatives has a substantial list of such places.

7 comments:

Graeme said...

I am graduating in May and am looking for a democratic workplace. This list should help. Thanks!

troutsky said...

This is real Hope, not the Obama variety.I just hope they are prepared for recession because we are all at the mercy of people who believe people losing their homes indicates a correction in a healthy market.

Renegade Eye said...

Minneapolis has a theater and restaraunt unit that is cooperative.

blackstone said...

beer is reactionary :)

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Renegade Eye said...

OT: See this.

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