A company is a legal fiction embodying a contract between many different parties, who mostly have conflicting interests: shareholders, executives, employees, customers, providers. Conflicting interests are especially present between employees and customers: after all, the more you pay your employees, the higher the price for the customers; conversely, the more you lower that price, the harder it is for employees to make ends meet.

The balance of power between a company’s many stakeholders mostly depends on the competitive pressure on markets for goods and services. On certain markets, such as the food and grocery market, competition is so intense that it brings the prices down at the expense of employees, hence the infamous “Wal-Mart…