I have some photos and papers showed in the wall of my office, one of them has some sentences written down, and one of which says: ?wonderful new doors are opening for me all the time? (Louise Hay). The challenge is that when it happens I must accept it with all the consequences, and this time it implied to deliver a short speech in front of a new audience. You can imagine it is easy for me due to I have been teaching for more than 25 years, however, it did not seem to me so easy. I struggled to find the right message and finally it was about ?conscious company?.

I trust you will allow me to skip some of the characteristics of my post, so this one will be a little bit longer and about my field of knowledge.

Over the last 25 years I have been teaching Human Resources Management, that has allowed me to read academic and informative articles. In all of them it is stated firmly that Human Resources are a business organization?s most valuable asset. And it has been proved through scientific researches that Human Resources and the way they are managed have an important impact on the organization performance. It means that instead them to be considered as a cost, they must be managed as a strategic resource.

It is at this point that I would just like to put one question to you: do you think that these statements are true? Do you agree with them? Perhaps, as my students, you have answered that it is not the reality that surrounds us, simply by taken in account the large number of redundancy, the kind of labour contracts and other circumstances.

Therefore, what do people mean for companies?

We can agree that one of the main aims of a company is earn money, be profitable, because otherwise, it would not survive. Well then, for a long time it has been considered that aims of a company and aims of workers have been incompatible. As a zero-sum game it implied that company could only make money at the expense of its workers.

This way of thinking has changed during the last decades, so it is intended that workers have a favourable situation and as a consequence they will be more productive, and finally the company more profitable. All plans and programs seeking to reduce absenteeism, to improve commitment and motivation, are based in this concept; that is to say, improving the life of workers the company will be more profitable.

It has been a substantial change, it cannot be denied; however a new form to consider the situation is taken shape, shifting from a zero-sum game to a win-win situation. It is the approach of Fred Kofman called ?conscious company? (metamanagement). According to this MIT professor, every company has three dimensions that must be considered together: impersonal, intrapersonal and personal; such as high, length and width, or our body, mind and soul.

At the first level we can find the activity of the company, production, efficiency, efficacy, profitability, making money now and in the future. Companies must been attractive for clients, suppliers, workers, owners and society, it means for all stakeholders.

Interpersonal dimension refers to all relationships, trust, solidarity and respect. All workers want to feel included, respected and want to have the opportunity to do the best.

And finally, all psychological and behavioural aspects, health and happiness are in the personal level.

The new business paradigm described by Kofman requires taking in account all three dimensions together, quite the opposite what has happened till now when the only important dimension has been the impersonal one. And what is more, it needs human beings with high level of awareness because they are who make decision and who are the responsible of what happen in companies.

But next question is how to move toward these new companies. Kofman suggests training conscious leaders who can become catalysts of a change in business culture. In other words, move from culpability to responsibility; from selfishness to integrity; from arrogance to humility; from narcissist negotiations to constructive negotiations. All these aspects are treated in depth by Kofman.

From my humble point of view, the contribution of this proposal is that we have moved from an abstract point of view to a more specific one, focused on the person.? If everyone behaves with these values, these new companies can be developed, and making money is possible.

Do not think that these new companies are only idealistic proposals, not even that they are valid only because a well known teacher speaks about them; they are only because there are more and more enlightened people.

Therefore, next question might be what enlightened people mean. However, it is a topic to be included in another post. I would like you to write some comment, do you think it is a utopia?

This page is also available in: Español