During the first six years 8th Day was run as a co-operative but was in fact legally a partnership. In 1976 On the Eighth Day Co-operative Limited registered as a workers’ co-operative under the Provident Societies Act.
What is a Worker Co-op?
A worker co-op is a co-operative owned and democratically managed by its workers. Most of the full time workers at 8th Day are members of the co-operative who work in either the shop or café AND manage the business. There is no top-down management system and we all earn the same; all members are expected to self-manage, and manage each other – often difficult, but worth it! The trade off: a sense of ownership of the business; playing a part in making decisions that affect you (the worker); empowering members to drive the business forward. Although we are relatively multi-skilled, in recent years – in order to remain competitive – we have placed more emphasis on members’ specific skills: our treasurers spend the majority of their time co-ordinating the co-op’s finances; we have two members trained to degree level in nutrition, and this is their main job; the chefs in the café also tend not to participate in many other activities…the essence is that all roles are regarded as of equal importance, and remunerated as such.