It’s the end of the world, as we know it (and I feel fine)
So said REM back in 1987.
25 years later the song could have been written for the way the media, many politicians and even businesses portray things today. But for all the current headlines of austerity, it’s time for talking about prosperity.
The modern world – even the last 25 years – has been shaped by some incredible innovations, individual determination and a genuine desire for progress. But success has always been defined in economic terms, not necessarily humanistic. When there is money to be made, there is often little time for anything else.
When change happens, be it political, economic, social or technological, it now happens faster than ever. It’s taking place with scant regard for different generations but influences our attitudes and motivations, leading us to think differently about the way things are and the way they could be. The end of the world as we know it today, perhaps?
So, what could businesses now think differently about to be relevant to future generations?
Money is not the motivator it once was, even for Gen X. The industrial revolution-esque work styles employed by many firms feel alien to Gen Y. And who knows what Gen Z will deem important. But promoting new measures of success that not only include wealth and economic growth but also personal freedom, social capital and quality of life has a positive impact on our overall wellbeing.
It’s called prosperity.
Growth and job creation are still vitally important. And liberal ideas may be a luxury for some time. But getting businesses to give greater emphasis to a few things other than money won’t be the end of the world.
And I’d feel fine with that.