Taking Your Organization to Business Transcendence
I have long been an advocate for business, making a difference in the world simply by the actions of doing business. I believe that a fully self-actualized organization would make a difference in the world, not by what it is doing but by who it is being. I am referring to the process a business would take in doing this which I call Business Transcendence.
Siri defines Transcendence as “existence or experience beyond the normal physical level.” So how does a business operate beyond the normal physical level? Well, have a look at Steve Jobs and Apple. Apple totally transformed the way society relates to technology. Apple made technology cool, not just the domain of a few of us nerds. Amazon attained Transcendence in the realm of e-commerce. I still remember the days when my friends and family were amazed that I did all of my holiday shopping online. Now it is a regular occurrence. Both of these companies transcended. So, what is the process a company takes to attain Business Transcendence?
Abraham Maslow (1908-1970) was an American psychologist who created a hierarchy of needs. At the pyramid’s base are physiological needs such as food and shelter. Above that is safety, then Love / Belonging, Esteem, and topping off with Self Actualization. The Process an organization maps to on the road to business transcendence is as follows:
The first step towards business transcendence is profitability. A business first needs to be profitable. Unless profitable, there is no money to hire and train staff or pay for facilities. The investors get angry, nag you constantly, the team grumbling rather than happily doing their work, and eventually, the business dies, its purpose never attained. Rather sad!
Once profitable, the next step on the business transcendence journey is sustainability; it must be able to sustain its profitability, be in the game for the long haul, and sustain its growth. A big part of sustainability is that if the business is wasting planetary resources, it is not sustainable. People dead from pollution do not buy stuff from any company.
The next stop on the Business Transcendence Highway is loyalty. Loyalty is an essential factor in the business world. With loyalty from customers and stakeholders, when the inevitable storms come along, you have friends to help get you through them.
The business must then take actions to guard its reputation. Once lost, a reputation can be difficult to get back. World Comm had changed the world and was a major player in the communications revolution. they took on ATT, breaking its monopoly on telecommunications. Then it took shortcuts and engaged in corrupt activities resulting in its bankruptcy and its executives disgraced and jailed.
Finally, you have business transcendence Which is when a business attains its purpose and changes the world! Examples of businesses that have attained business transcendence are Wells Fargo, Ford, Microsoft, Google, Meta (Facebok), IBM… There are several!
Let’s take a look at Apple. Steve Jobs came back to a company that was weeks away from bankruptcy. First, he got rid of the unprofitable lines like the Newton and concentrated on where his bread and butter was, The Mac. Once the company was profitable and able to sustain itself, he released things like the iPod and iPhone. He built the loyalty of both his employees and his customer. Apple products changed the world!
Just because a company achieves business transcendence, doesn’t mean it will always be in transcendence. Failure to maintain the lower levels of the pyramid will cause a business to collapse. The example of World Comm was given earlier. Another example is Montgomery Wards. “Monkey Wards” had caused a shift in the consumer habits of all Americans with its catalog shopping. Then it didn’t keep up with the times, became bloated, didn’t embrace the internet… Guess what, it collapsed!
So, what is something needed to attain Transcendence? the answer is focus! Well, my brand is Dr Get in Focus, so I am sure you had to have guessed that one! You and your team must master the fine art of being able to focus on the tasks you have at hand to take you to the next step. The pivot to remote work makes that all the more vital… This is even more pronounced if you have a neurodiverse superpower such as Adult Attention Deficit Disorder. I am offering a free clarity session: Click here
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To learn more about Abraham Maslow: Click Here