Thanks to its thriving culture, engaged workforce, and dedicated employee-owners, Wiley|Wilson has been named the 2017 ESOP Mid-Atlantic Chapter’s Employee-owned Company of the Year. The award was announced at the Mid-Atlantic Chapter’s annual spring meeting in Charlottesville, VA. With this win, Wiley|Wilson is now in the running for National ESOP Company of the Year, which will be announced at the National ESOP Conference in Washington, DC, in May.
An ESOP, or Employee Stock Ownership Plan, is an employee benefit plan that enables employees to have an ownership interest in their company. More than 10 million employees work for more than 11,000 ESOP companies in the US.
“We are incredibly honored that the Mid-Atlantic Chapter selected Wiley|Wilson as its ESOP Company of the Year,” said Fred Armstrong, Chairman and CEO. “Our employee-owners recognize the benefits of ownership and understand that when the company succeeds, everyone benefits. Their dedication and commitment to the ESOP ownership model is the reason for our continued success.”
“This is an achievement that every employee-owner should be proud of,” said Tyler Morris, PE, Engineer, Mechanical Department. Tyler is the current chair of the Wiley|Wilson’s ESOP Communications Committee, whose purpose is to ensure all employee-owners know how the company’s ESOP plan works and understand what it means to be an owner.
“Our ownership culture has grown significantly since we first became an ESOP and the committee is always looking for new ways to promote the idea of ownership,” Tyler added. “Being named Company of the Year proves that we are on the right track and our efforts are having a positive effect.”
In 2016, the ESOP Communications Committee launched a year-long campaign to “Bring Ownership Into Focus.” The campaign was aimed at helping existing employee-owners better understand their roles as owners and become more engaged in the company’s ESOP events, while introducing new employee-owners to the philosophy of ownership. In May the company held its signature ownership event, the Fifth Annual Ownership Retreat, which focused on helping employee-owners gain a deeper understanding of two of the company’s core values, accountability and engagement.
The “Bring Ownership Into Focus” theme continued in October, which is Ownership Month. ESOP companies across the country take the opportunity to raise awareness about the many benefits of employee-ownership. At Wiley|Wilson, employee-owners at all offices participated in events and activities designed to build the ownership culture and remind employee-owners of what “ownership behavior” looks like.
Throughout the year members of the ESOP Communications Committee actively participated in ownership events hosted by both the national ESOP Association and the local Mid-Atlantic Conference. Employee-owners attended and/or served as panelists at both the fall and spring MAC meetings, and committee members traveled to the national ESOP Association Conference in DC in May.