Business is generally seen as the antithesis of beauty. Frequently pitched in battle against the arts, culture and
the environment, business is often cast as the bad guy, sometimes rightly so!
Business has an influence on the lives of everyone. Our society overflows with screaming television advertisements,
rampant consumerism, unsympathetic development and business corruption. While it’s difficult to see ways in
which business can become a vehicle for enhancing our world, I believe us soloists can influence business
reputation for the better.
We need to be careful of our definition of beauty. For example I have worked in the fashion industry, producing
’beauty’ products, and have witnessed manipulation and dishonesty in that business’ marketing and
the way they treat their staff and customers.
Conversely, I have worked with businesses creating products or providing services that are ostensibly uninspiring and
purely functional, but do so in an exquisitely beautiful manner; with deep integrity, respect and caring for their
staff and customers.
So what can we do to improve business reputation and make our business beautiful?
We can start by considering the way we do business. You can try asking yourself the following questions:
- When I’m in conversation with a client am I fully present? Am I listening to them and taking account of
their needs and wishes? Or am I fast-forwarding to closing the deal, focussed on what I am going to get from them?
- Am I willing to be patient and wait until the right time to act? Or do I force things or pressure others with my
own personal time frames and agendas?
- Do the concepts of respect, caring and even love play a part in the way I do business?
- Do I work with a sense of service, higher purpose or mission and even spirit?
- Is my work a manifestation of my values and what is
important to me in my life?
- How do I interact with and impact upon the wider community and the environment?
- Are my charitable sponsorships and donations heartfelt or simply promotional expenses?
- How do I present myself to the world, in the way I answer the phone, order coffee or drive my car?
- Am I balanced in my work and life, able to combine a sense of yin and yang to temper my decisiveness and focus
with a softness, grace and kindness?
- Am I honest and in integrity as I negotiate, promote and market my business? Or do I resort to manipulation and
lies, even misusing techniques like NLP purely for selfish gains?
- Is my website a blot on the cyber landscape? Or does it inspire and brighten the day of my visitors?
- Do my sales letters and advertising uplift the reader, or grind them down with their mind-numbing banality, on my
relentless crusade to extract money from them?
- Does my business enhance the world, or simply fill it with more noise and meaninglessness?
When it comes to business it is not so much about creating beautiful works of art – although if your
product or service is directly able to impact positively upon the visual or sensory aesthetics of the world that is
certainly something to celebrate.
Rather beautiful business is about bringing beauty to the art of work, and if we are able to do that in some
small way, we can be certain that we are improving business reputation and contributing towards the betterment of the
world we live in.