Ways of doing business these days are different from how it was done twenty years ago and will surely be different in the coming twenty years.
Change is the key word, and the business world is changing so rapidly that people need to constantly adapt, perform and overcome in order to survive.
Giving these facts and challenges, every business need to find the most adapted solutions and implement rules and procedures in order to maintain its competitive position, protect its market shares and above all maintain the level of survival of the human beings involved in this business (Owners, staff…)
During all the changes that have occurred throughout the years many very successful businesses lost everything while other small businesses became big multinationals.
It might seem difficult to believe, and sometimes irrational, said like that, but the truth is not much more complicated or detailed then the simple statement above, it’s all about change.
Change is indeed a very wide word or verb but when it’s employed with another word such as Human it can mean a lot.
In fact two combinations exist with these two words: “Human Change” and “Change Human”, and I am sure that one combination is as important and meaningful as the other, the prove to it will follow:
Harley-Davidson is today one of the, if not the most prestigious motorcycles manufacturers in the world but several years ago as much difficult as it can seem to believe, the same company with the same product was going to close its doors giving the bad quality level that its production has attained.
The explanation to the Harley-Davidson phenomenon can be done in three words: Human, Human, and Human.
The first Human is to underline the changes of needs and demands of the Humans riding motorcycles, these people become more demanding and tended to compare with foreign products, the hard competition started.
The second human is to explain the human relationships that existed at that time between the managers and the production line employees which where defined by non negotiable instructions and an absolute repression of mind expression for the production line employees.
The third Human is to highlight the tremendous change in Human relationships and perceptions which gave the production line employees the absolute authority and freedom of managing their work and products and taking their own decisions for the sake of what they called “our products quality”.
“Our products quality” is a very important statement to review in order to understand the concept I will be introducing and that if well implemented would fundamentally change the way we do business.
The need of belonging has been considered by Maslow, one of the most important needs that a Human being can have, and that is absolutely true.
Based on this reality, our imagination is the only limit of what a Human is capable to do to fulfill this need and business is a micro society in the macro society that is the worlds market.
Introducing the new Paradigm:
I believe that every person working in a business must be a shareholder in that business no matter what position or task he is responsible for, the shares must be rationally distributed based on the degree of responsibilities of each and every person.
It is true that many companies nowadays have incentive a participation programs for their employees but at the end of the day, the employee is still the employee and the owner is still the owner.
Over, is the time where businesses are hold by one or few persons employing sometimes thousands of employees for a simple salary at the end of the month; no matter how motivated and contentious the employee is, he or she will never work for the ultimate success of the business as the owner will.
So, why not making of the employees the owners since they are the key of success of every business and they are the only ones who can adapt the changes and come up with solutions.
Working for themselves will not only increase their motivation but also sensibilise them to the real responsibilities since they will be responsible for the destiny of their business, in other words their own destiny.
Several experiences showed the effectiveness of implicating all level staff in the decision process; this concept cannot but succeed even more in the way we do business.
To illustrate my concept I would like to draw a concrete example of what can be done in the new generation business:
One person X has an idea of company and believes in the success of this company so he registers it and starts the opening procedures.
X is the managing director and he needs an assistant so he search for the person Y that have the appropriate profile for the position and ask him if he wants to be part of this company explaining to him that he will not have fixed salary but 20% of shares in this company.
After that, the company needs a secretary and he or she will not have a fixed salary but 5% of the shares of the company.
So on and so forth with the other 3 employees needed for the company and they will get 5% of the shares each and once again no fixed salary.
Now the team is complete and business can start, in fact the earnings of each member of the team will depend only on the work and efforts done by each and every member of that team without distinction and here comes the beautiful part.
Each employee is part of this business, he feels responsible in case of failure but also proud and accomplished in case of success, and we all know nobody like to fail.
Presented this way the concept seems too good to be true and indeed it contains huge challenges in its process:
First, it is difficult to find people that want to share their innovative business ideas with other.
Second, it is not easy to find people at all level willing to take risks without a security that is a fixed salary.
Third, is the engagement the members of a team have since their shares are related to their specific position and task and cannot be sold to a person that cannot fulfill the same tasks as them.
But, after all who said that life is easy and risk free, people must adapt and overcome.
This is my way as future business owner of adapting and overcoming business life changes, by relying on business owners like me, that means all my team members.