A reward for the team effort

Nil & Sophie Comme Avant shop

I’ve been wanting to write this post for a while now but it’s not easy to find the right words.

I have spent a lot of time wondering if my vision of entrepreneurship is possible. In spite of your feedback, your comments, and your support, in the last few months I have received advise from senior executives, managers, founders who clearly made me understand that my ideas were very utopian.

These past weeks have been intense for the whole team. On the final day before Comme Avant’s winter holiday closure, I took another step towards my vision of a fairer company by announcing a bonus for the team effort accomplished in 2019.

For some, this bonus was unexpected and incredible, a few came to thank us with tears in their eyes, others literally jumped for joy, whereas some asked us if we hadn’t made a mistake on the amount, and finally others didn’t find the strength to thank us orally but wrote to us.

Doubling or tripling their wages, according to the time they had spent in the company, was clearly going to make some react but I wasn’t expecting such responses.

Their reactions made perfect sense, but some of them made me feel a little uncomfortable. Usually, I calculate, analyse, and anticipate everything. However this time I didn’t really know what to tell them and I had to hold my tears back.

Management has its limits and in the the end, only actions count. In 2019, we have redistributed nearly 1/5 of our turnover to our employees.

Alternatives to stock and share capitalism do exist. Whatever some company managers may think, I didn’t listen to them and risked all we had.

A company’s value is highly thanks to its employees. Comme Avant is us but mainly them.

I am proud of my team, their abilities, and their commitment.

Comme Avant chose not to give them any « presents » but a fair reward for their team effort.


Photo credit - Aniko Molnar Photography and Journalism