A significant new study has shown that majority employee-owned companies with Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs) are outperforming non-employee owned companies during the COVID-19 pandemic in the areas of job retention, pay, benefits, and workplace health safety. The study revealed that ESOPs have been more proactive about ensuring the safety of employees during the pandemic and are generally more optimistic that they will return to business as normal at some point.  Those are the key findings from a new study conducted by Rutgers University and SSRS, and funded by the Employee Ownership Foundation, an affiliate of The ESOP Association. They echo similar findings regarding the performance and behavior of employee owned companies during the 2008-2010 recession, although the addition of an international health emergency adds a significant new element to the employee/employer response dynamic.