“It’s hard to believe that companies…can fall behind the times, begin closing locations, and then vanish completely before our eyes. Sadly, the stories of the demise of these businesses are all too common in today’s world,” writes business expert Zain Raj, in his semi-fictional, semi-business and leadership advice book The Pyramid Puzzle: Igniting Transformation with the Power of Trust.
“But rarer still are the stories of companies who faced such adversity and found new, creative ways to turn things around and become relevant again — surviving and thriving past even the dreams of their founders decades ago. This is a fictional story of a company that made the decision to fight to exist or die trying. The company in this novel had generations of battling heirs who had become too complacent in the company’s long existence, expecting the good times to go on forever — and the checks to keep rolling in, regardless of the creeping reality outside their front doors.
What they didn’t realize was how far the business had fallen into disrepair, how the once-proud retail locations had begun crumbling in plain sight, how the suppliers were becoming estranged, how the morale of management and employees at all levels reached historic lows, and how the customers, both brick and mortar and online, had been fleeing in great numbers for some time.”
Through the depiction of this fictitious organization, Mr. Raj is able to fully conjure his points, corporate philosophy, and statistically-backed insights in real-time. He shows, doesn’t tell, the reader — a critical aspect to what makes The Pyramid Puzzle: Igniting Transformation with the Power of Trust stand apart from its peers. Many books focusing on business and leadership advice fall victim to a specific demographic, sometimes an out-and-out audience of one. But Raj doesn’t let this happen, and in the process does everyone — in the widest possible sense — a great service. “We grew up with and in these businesses and have memories attached to them, like the days we spent running in the aisles as children on new tricycles, the afternoons we went in to buy that first suit for that new job, the days our teenaged daughters perused the aisles to find the perfect prom dress for a high school dance, and the after-work evenings when we stood beaming with pride staring at the barbecue grills for that first house for our growing families,” he writes. “…
While the story that you just read is a fable, and there is no such firm as Trikaya, the issues presented in the story are extremely real. The most valuable possession of a company is not trademarks or patents — it’s trust. It doesn’t matter how long your company has been in business, what last year’s balance sheet looks like, what the stock price is, or even what people say about you on social media. What matters is the level of trust that you command in the marketplace.”
It’s nice to see that Raj can balance not just showing how to be successful, but in the process make you feel empowered while reading about it!