The world is looking at constellation of circumstances that will cause an explosion of activity in organizational structuring that blurs the current models. And it’s not coming any time too soon.
First: Traditional government has become ineffective and is seen as virtually useless to many. This view will become even more prevalent as government becomes even more polarized – on every level in most countries.
Second: Technology has made the easy of entry into virtually every endeavour so that just about anyone can undertake anything. With the new service, Square, being offered by former Twitter founder, Jack Dorsey … anybody can take credit card transactions – anywhere. Imagine the possibilities for timely micro-causes.
And third, and probably most significant: Our workforce is increasingly filling up with Generation Y members, the Millennials. The teenagers and “20 somethings” are not like their parents the Baby Boomers. Their professional motivations extend well past money. They are actually concerned about the state of the world. They need to clean up the messes their parents made.
We just all need to open our minds to the possibilities of what an organization can look like and what it’s there for in the first place.
Before the dotcom boom, one never heard the question “what’s your business model?” Asking it would have marked you as dim. A few standard models had been around for a hundred years or so: extractive businesses and agriculture, manufacturing operations, service businesses, media companies, and financial intermediaries, each accommodating a few variations like franchising, piecework, door-to-door sales, temporary labor.
But an even more fundamental kind of business model innovation is also underway, as entrepreneurs of both the traditional and the social varieties experiment with the notion that an enterprise should produce a mix of value, not only financial.
So with some companies earning profits made up of tax revenues, and other organizations providing services that could be public using private funds, it turns out that the sectors of the economy are not so clear-cut and binary. Rather, we see a spectrum of arrangements between the two extremes, in which there are enterprises producing both financial and social value.