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Investing in the
human economy Indroneil Mukerjee

We have lived through two major stages of economic evolution employees, partners, clients and even competition as the value of
that is, the agrarian and the industrial economy, and have already loyalty is being replaced by respect.
stepped into the third stage that is the human economy.
From performance to contribution
Even as we are trying to cope with drastic changes being brought
The human economy is all about symbiotic growth. Growth that
about this, hangovers of practices of the pervious waves still seem to
happens through co-existence and co-creation. Investors now need
be taking charge of our business behavior.
to look at measuring contribution as one would measure the extent
One of the areas where the shadow of the past seems to loom of fertilization that happens when a bee sits on a flower to draw
large is in realms of investment. The essence of human economy nectar. This also means humanistic enterprises need authentically
is and will continue to be tapping into higher than realized to be seen as providing the ‘nectar’ of life than mere substinence.
human potentials of participation and performance. And to see This may require scrapping mechanistic, transaction oriented
the businesses that the investors are HR systems and processes and invest
investing in grow and evolve, they need in instituting processes that are more
to, as of yesterday recognize this truth. participative and evolving.
Those who have already invested as From benchmarks to bench-paths
well as those who are contemplating
All hi-points of human accomplishment
to invest in start-ups or scale ups
are driven by values. Human beings are
need to radically re-work on the
essentially wired to driven by their values
criteria for evaluation, due diligence,
to joyfully invest in their talents in a
monitoring and development to be
manner that they can consistently exceed
able to see healthy returns on their
all benchmarks, including their own, to
investment. That is, assuming, that
create exponentially increasing value. For
most or all investments are being made
in enterprises which are humanistic
Even as we are trying to cope with themselves as well as for the space they
systems and not robotic or alienistic. drastic changes being brought about exist in. Any institutional benchmark
therefore will curb this humanistic glory
Some of the shifts envisaged are: this, hangovers of practices of the to bring in consistent mediocrity. Investors
From survivability to
pervious waves still seem to be taking need to ensure that businesses are
evolvability charge of our business behavior outlaying sufficient funds to enable each
contributor discover their hidden values,
All enterprises created with a purpose potentials and talents and create roles that
are meant to live and evolve. And as a corollary if one can uncover, are talent centric, to enable the individuals to choose bench-paths of
focus on, articulate and monitor the inherent evolvability of the infinite excellence.
enterprise, growth is a natural outcome. A one-time investment in
such discovery and ongoing investment in tracking and auditing
From training to learning
evolvability is recommended. Learning is the life blood of any growing and evolving enterprise.
Investors also need to make sure that sufficient investment is being
From employment to enrolment
made to enhance learnability of the learners, capacity building of
Humanistic systems and sub-systems do not uphold captivity and enablers and creation of an environment that fosters measurable
dependence. On the contrary they, often through extreme chaos, business-relevant learning both for the individuals as well as the
work towards re-instating human freedom. The investors need to institution. They also need to advise plugging the leaks that are
recognize that enterprises in the human economy need to enroll happening due to the contributing human capital getting locked in
people as inter-dependent members of a symbiotic growth and classrooms to attend meaningless cookie-cutter lectures.
have systems and processes that uphold such memberships. An
Indroneil Mukerjee, Transformational Coach & Executive Mentor,
interesting feature of this shift is blurring of boundaries between
iProdigy Learning Services P Limited.; Email:
June 2010