Doing business differently.
A Guild of Christian Entreprenuers
"God is able to make all GRACE abound to you, so that having all sufficiency, in all things, at all times, you may abound in every good work."
“As an entreprenuer and Christ-follower, I have been on a journey to understand my role as an employer in my community. Within a few years of starting my first business in 2008, I desired to create a workplace environment that helped my team thrive, not just in their productivity to the business, or in their financial health, but as complete men and women of God.
Early on we experimented with hybrid pay structures (rewarding customer service and proficiency through daily bonuses and profit-sharing) and stretched ourselves to offer limited benefits. Paying my team well was a start but giving them a voice in designing our company culture revealed other bottlenecks to their growth and thriving.
Empowering my team to take on new responsibilities, taking time to dream together, supporting one another through challenges outside of work, and sharing a clear mindset that people CAN grow, no matter how stuck they seem, proved to be great soil for the growth of lasting, discipleship-oriented friendships.
As we work, we spend a couple thousand hours each year engaging our minds and bodies in community to solve problems and serve people. Not only can this be done in ways that add value to the world, but it can be done in an environment that draws us nearer to Christ.
In 2018 I entered my first employee-ownership agreement with my team. It was a simple “stick with me and I’ll give you some of the business” kind of deal, but it was immediately obvious that it was a win-win. I was learning a profound truth. As entreprenuers we tend to idolize our ability to build something bigger than ourselves. Yet, no matter how many wage-slaves we employ, no matter how much capital we multiply, we can never build anything greater than ourselves, for that would surpass God’s own crown of creation. Therefore, while a good leader can convince people to build something big, only by sharing ownership of the thing being built with the people who build it, can we magnify the dignity God gave those people when he built them. It’s all about people…and we entrepruers have a unique opportunity to bless the people who work for us.” -John Burdine Jr, GECO founder
Some Hard Facts
It's all about people...
Socialism? Capitalism? Have you ever considered a third way?
I managed to get a political science degree and take multiple economics classes without ever hearing about the most important economic theory of our time. It's called distributism by some (not to be confused with re-distribution) and the "just third way" by others. The realities around us demonstrate that both capitalism and socialism share a common, horrendous flaw. They both trend toward FEWER owners of income generating capital as big business or big government gain market share, ownership, and therefore power.
It is common knowledge (though uncommonly discussed) that big business and big government are actually the same thing. Politicians are bought by lobbyists, and tax law, rules and regulations are written by corporate lawyers.
At the end of the day, social handouts are cheap insurance that true freedom and true power stay where they are, in hands of those who own the most.
One side of the aisle values freedom and prosperity while the other values justice and compassion. There is a single principle that can bring about all of it: widespread capital ownership. GECO is not political organization (we'll leave the policy suggestions to our friends over at the Center for Economic and Social Justice). We are simply entreprenuers who put our belief about human dignity to action with how we run our companies.