Thursday, September 4, 2008

Handle with love

At SoulQuest hand-made products are a passion for us . This coupled with the exploration of India's textile heritage makes for a lot of 'aha!' moments at work. 

While maintaining a certain quality and look we experiment a fair amount to make product presentations creative , engaging and more importantly respectful of the product , people and everything that went into creating it . Few months ago we decided to stamp some of the exceptional hand made products with a stamp that says "Handle with love" . It was interesting to see the response it elicited within the extended SoulQuest community . Many loved it . Some were alarmed (what's the word love doing in a company's lexicon ? ). Spirited discussions ensued. Can't say that we have converted all the skeptics . The doors are open for an ongoing dialogue .

To our delight a Japanese retailer loved the idea and has requested to feature "Handle with Love" on their forthcoming garment collection . 

Business is essentially a human endeavor . A working person spends most of his waking hours at work . As consumers we experience the products and services created by businesses. Worldwide business is a force that wields far greater power than governments or any institution . In an essentially human endeavor that is today the most powerful force shaping the planet - does it make sense to pretend that emotions , values have no place ? To see business primarily as an aggregation of numbers ? This view of business in varying degrees is responsible to a large extent for the state of the planet and it's inhabitants . Sadly this 'view' is not just a view . It's the eyes through which many see i.e it's so deep rooted . Active acknowledgement and inclusion of emotions and values are essential to nurture creativity and intuition . The quantum leaps we need to make as a species are unlikely to come from a view of business where business is seen an end in itself  or an elaborate number game.

For many the sterile view of business is like 'The Emperor's New Clothes' . Not everyone though has the honesty and courage of the child in that fable . 

We can alter the view and role of business through actions and choices we make everyday as business people and consumers. Granted that the change is unlikely to happen overnight . But the current view of business too did not develop in a day .

Tread with courage .

3 comments:

RAHUL AITHAL said...

Loved it.

Rahul

Arvind said...

The issues you have raised are after my heart. Someone needed to voice them and more importantly act on them. You have blazed that trail that will take businesses and us humans a long way.

Neelakantan said...

Good one...Handle with love indeed. How about TLC?