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Imagining a “New Normal” for Business

Wake up Call

The last couple of weeks have been tough and I must admit to feeling anxious at times. But I’m also hopeful. Whilst I wouldn’t have wished any of us to have to go through this, I think this was the wake up call that we all needed. A wake up call in terms of how we treat our planet, in terms of how we organise our society and how we treat people.

Sense Making

Ten days ago I joined over 1,000 people from all over the world on a zoom call for GAIA ( Global Activation of Intention and Action). The Presencing Institute at MIT were the organisers and it was just one of five calls taking place that day. Over 5,000 people were involved in total! GAIA is a global infrastructure for sense-making and for leaning into our current moment of disruption leading to civilisational renewal. Everyone on this call shared some great insights. One was that when we face disruption we have a choice to turn away and close down or to turn towards and open up with curiosity, compassion and courage. The ‘Failure of Imagination” was also mentioned and we were challenged to start writing about the future we want to see.

Business as a Force For Good

We can’t waste this crisis so I don’t want to see things to go back to normal. Whilst others will concentrate on climate change or the relief of poverty, I want to focus on how businesses are set up and run. So, what do I imagine for a business of the future? It fundamentally needs to be a force for good;

  • A focus on purpose and people rather than profit
  • Decision making that focuses on the long term and takes into account all stakeholders 
  • Workplaces where there is transparency, participation and employees are treated fairly
  • Companies that contribute positively to their local community
  • Collaborative entrepreneurship that is purposeful and authentic
  • Servant leaders who support their colleagues and enable them to grow and develop
  • No vast differential between the highest and lowest paid person in an organisation

Two Challenges

I’ll finish with two challenges;

  • Why don’t you share your vision for the future you want to see
  • If any of what I’ve written resonates with you then please get in touch. I’m currently researching new ideas for ownership, financing and operating models for business and I’d love to connect with others who share this interest.