Blockchain: The Future of Business and Commerce

Mike Harrison September 6, 2017

Ok, I know what you’re thinking, “That’s a pretty big claim, Mike.”

Blockchain is a new technology and I realize not everyone is going to know what it is before reading this article. But trust me. It is eventually going to affect every part of our lives.

What is Blockchain?

Blockchain is at its core, a technology that is a way to store a set of records about transactions of items that have value. Think of it as a balance book for every transaction that has ever happened for a particular commodity.

Homes for example are a great use case for a blockchain. By tracking activity on a home on a blockchain, you retain data about every important event associated, such as repairs, upgrades, inspections, foreclosures, robberies, etc.

The blockchain is distributed across millions of machines and is not controlled by a single company or governing body. The data contained in each record is also “un-tamperable” or immutable.

I won’t go into the details about how the technology works, because it can change based on the blockchain you are referring to. Just know that the core ideology that is a real game changer for business is that the record is immutable (meaning you will be able to tell if the data is false or has been tampered with) and with the history of all of the records of a particular entity, there is a potential to develop a reputation.

What does this mean for business?

Think about all of the times you have done research on a particular product, service, or company before you bought. Now try and estimate the total amount of time in your life you have spent doing research like this. What would you do if you could get that time back?

Now think about all of the times when you did a bunch of research, thought it was going to be a good purchase, and after you received the product or worked with the company you had a terrible (or less pleasant than expected) experience.

With more systems and industries that use blockchain technology this can all change.

The death of “know, like, and trust”

Organizations like the BBB need to pick up on this and start to implement a reputation rating system. And I don’t mean an A+ through F scale…it needs to be 0 through 100 so there is room for a more granular rating.

This makes it possible to remove the human error or bias out of the equation which radically levels the playing field for businesses competing against each other.

No longer will huge corporations with large marketing budgets beat out a smaller company simply because a prospect has seen their advertisements.

With an unbiased rating system, we can allow everyone to choose to do business with companies that have a good reputation score.

No longer will it be a game of “know, like, and trust.” Businesses will be motivated to truly serve their customers, add value to their lives/business/the world, and follow through on their word.

Killing off the scam industry

I’ve heard countless stories of people being taken advantage of through some kind of online or phone scam.

Imagine a future where this rating system exists — it’s as easy as a Google search — and as soon as you receive a call like this, you can search for the company who is calling you and look at their reputation score.

You will now know the history of their business and why they have a certain rating. If they are known for scams, there’s no way you’re going to shell out the 500 bucks they’re asking for to “fix” your computer.

With a widespread adoption of this rating system, I can see it making the entire scam industry less profitable and maybe not profitable at all. The whole reason why this industry thrives is because people are so easy to fool.

Not anymore.

Decentralized business?

Decentralized autonomous organizations (DAO for short) are companies with no executive body. All employees own part of the company and have to literally “buy in.”

The thing that makes DAO’s so revolutionary is the fact that anyone in the company can contribute value to the company and the value of the entire company goes up, thus raising the value of the employees ownership.

This means that if you want to increase your salary, you just need to bring something valuable to the table. It incentivizes everyone to contribute value, rather than just wanting a paycheck.

Your token value within the company will increase according to the value of the company and is recorded in the blockchain. You can also earn new tokens by doing more work for the organization. You are able to check all of this data within a system such as Aragon or Colony.

Radical? Yes. Valuable? Yes. The next big thing? Not yet…but it’s coming.

Given that this is an entirely new way of making a living (and an entirely new structure for business owners to learn), this is going to take some time to adopt.

That said…there are tons of opportunities for growth in this new space. I believe it is only a matter of time before people understand just how valuable running a company in this structure really is.

I would love to hear your feedback on how you think blockchain technology will affect business. Please leave a comment and let me know how you see the future!

Mike Harrison avatar

About Mike Harrison

I love business and learning about what it means to be human. I'm always looking for ways to improve myself and everything around me. I am also a hard core EDM and uplifting music fan. If you catch me without music playing, I'm probably a doctor. Oh yea and I eat sleep and breathe code.

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