Change is inevitable, but many businesses don’t like or want change. Not when they’re on top, and milking the cash cow; if it’s not broke, don’t try to fix it! But just because you’re making super profits, and your customers adore you, doesn’t mean it’s going to be that way forever, even if you’re Apple or Coca-Cola. Just ask Kodak.
Shareholders and employees like to think it’s ‘their’ business, but it’s not much fun running or owning a business with no customers; a bit like a morgue, except that even a morgue has customers, someone paying the bills.
In these days of collaborative pro-sumption, it’s increasingly difficult to tell the stakeholders apart. Take my golfing assist group for example. Run by an AI messenger bot, it gets us the best deals on golf balls, gear and clubs, group discounts on green fees, and automatically schedules tee-off times among golf buddies, even arranging pool rides to the golf course, and recruiting new players when someone cancels.
It’s a virtual organization, with no employees or headquarters, and no central locus of control. And because it’s blockchain-based, anyone can join or retire, with no penalties or fees; a non-profit ‘business’ delivering real value only to its members.
So whose business is it really? Anybody’s and everybody’s, but mainly the customer’s!