Democracy in Business

I have always been troubled by the notion that if democracy is such a great institution, why is it not practiced within commercial organizations? The answer I always seem to run into is that the process is too slow to be pragmatic in a fast-paced commercial setting.

Democracy, as it is practiced in a govermental setting, is inherently a slow process because it’s outcome is typically long-standing policy. The typical outcome of commercial enterprise is not long-term policy, but short term-profits (other things too, but for the sake of this discussion…).

When people say that democracy is too unweldy to be used in a commercial space, I would argue that they are looking at the process related to one instance of democracy and not the underlying concept of democracy, which I believe is the integration of opinions of all stakeholders.

I believe that democracy can be leveraged to effect in comercial organizations, we just need to rethink the process. The tools available to us today can be the great facilitators to make this happen. We just have to change our own self-limiting assumptions about how we can use these tools to make better (and fast) decisions.


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