Partners on escalator

Working for us

The John Lewis Partnership exists today because of the extraordinary vision and ideals of our founder John Spedan Lewis. He believed that industrial democracy – where Partners shared profit, knowledge and power – was a better way of doing business. His unique vision means the Partnership is owned in trust for its members, who share the responsibilities of ownership as well as its rewards.

Spedan Lewis also believed in experimentation and openly encouraged it. Today this ethos lives on. It is up to each and every Partner to ensure an environment for experimentation is created and for democracy to thrive. As co-owners, this is what sets us apart from other organisations and allows us to do business differently.

What does working in a Partnership mean?

Being a Partnership is about much more than sharing the profits: it defines our approach to what we do. With ownership comes responsibility, and the knowledge that our success depends entirely on providing the best quality products and services to our customers so that they come back to us again and again. Our democratic network of elected councils, committees and forums gives Partners a real say in our decision-making processes, and allows us to challenge management on performance and have a real say in how the business is run. This sense of collective responsibility extends to everyone we deal with, from customers and suppliers to the communities we're part of.

Employee Ownership

Our Partners will tell you that the John Lewis Partnership is a very special place to work. We believe our distinctive culture – our spirit – lies at the heart of this feeling. After all, as a Partnership we are a democracy – open, fair and transparent. Our profits are shared, our Partners have a voice and there is a true sense of pride in belonging to something so unique and highly regarded. We build relationships with our customers, suppliers and each other based on honesty, respect and encouragement.

Employee Ownership video

The 'Employee Ownership, A Shared Passion' video, explains how our employee owned business model operates in practice, and offers insight and advice to anyone wanting to learn more about this sort of model and its benefits.

Watch the Employee Ownership, A Shared Passion video (2:45 minutes).

Partnership Spirit video

The 'Partnership Spirit' video explores some of the ideas and behaviours that are important to us, and what makes the John Lewis Partnership the special business it is.

Watch the Partnership Spirit video (4:17 minutes).