Transforming Ideas About Business

by Jay Deragon on 05/30/2012

We are living in times when old knowledge is no longer adequate to comprehend or adapt to the dramatic changes emerging before our eyes.

Not just a cute slogan rather a statement of the current transformation business as unusual truly reflects the philosophical shifts occurring in today’s marketplace of exchanges.

Unusual reflects the fact that change, as we are witnessing, has little historical perspective to create meaningful assessment as to outcomes. Rather what we are witnessing is radical, deep and widespread transformation in how people think about the human exchange and subsequent commercialization of those exchanges.

The New Human Economy Is Emerging

Umair Hague writes in his new book Betterness: Economics for Humans:  The paradigm we casually call business is just one approach to human exchange. It was built in an industrial era, and for it. Its fundamental assumptions—shareholder value creation, mass production, hierarchical management, disposable goods made for consumers—are today less profitable, useful, worthy, and beneficial than ever. Betterness, in contrast, isn’t just a slightly better way to “do business”; it’s the art of bettering prosperity so it arcs through the stratosphere of an authentically good life, bettering human potential so it unfurls into accomplishment and, at its outer limits, transforms human possibility radically for the better. Haque, Umair (2011-12-15). Betterness: Economics for Humans (Kindle Single) (Kindle Locations 78-82). Perseus Books Group. Kindle Edition.

Rather than an economy based on production we are entering an economy based on meaning driven by human intentions fulfilled. When human intentions are fulfilled without constraints or tricks then productivity goes up. Productivity in the sense of human exchanges with purpose, meaning and both driven by social, intellectual and spiritual capital. The end result is a new kind of business fueled by human exchange of ideas that fulfill human intentions seamlessly.

The New Business Objective: Betterment

Forget the end result focus on the aim, betterment. If business focused on bettering people’s lives than radical transformations would happen including:

  1. People would gain meaning out of doing business with you
  2. The meaning gained would pull many others to you
  3. Buying would no longer be a burden rather a pleasure
  4. Vision and mission would be boiled down to what and how can we improve lives for whom
  5. Traditional strategies would be replaced with unusual strategies

These are just a few of the radical changes swelling on the horizon. To learn more about what these changes and how our thinking about business must change I highly recommend Umair Hague new book Betterness: Economics for Humans. This is a must read for those interested in a better future.

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