In the current investment paradigm, there is often a conflict with what it is good for the whole and what is good for investors.
This can be a complicated subject. The recent chaos caused by the recent pandemic, as well as the transparency on current racial issues makes it very clear that our basic systems in society just do not work for most people. There are far too many inequities. System change is complicated and hard, but necessary right now. It starts with the need for radical honesty regarding the full extent of the problems in society and how all the parts intersect. Fortunately, when you start to bring together current computing technology with interdisciplinary experts you can start to draw a map of the full extent of the issues. It is only then can you come up with a strategy of the potential solutions that work for the whole. You will often figure out numerous investment ideas at this point, but none of them lead you to investments that concentrate power or cause more monopolies. There is nothing wrong with earning solid returns for the risk you are taking, but the long term value you are creating need to work for the whole, especially in areas that are critical to society such as food security, healthcare, education, etc. If you have a business idea that scales up quickly and has a chance to dominate an industry, investors will line up at the door for the chance to invest, even if you are causing numerous problems with that investment longer term due to the concentrated power that results. This approach to investing is all about scaling up and dominating industries, but this actually destroys freedom, creativity, and capitalism, as well as breeds numerous inequities longer term. It is a very win/lose model. It is a “win” for the narrow few and a big “loss” for everyone else.
With this 360 degree model, you can see problems with existing companies as well and this has all sorts of issues associated with it. How do you change these things without causing more chaos? You can also see looking at this 360 degree view how and why conspiracy theories start and evolve. It is very threatening to people who run large companies or investors that invest in them. Do you expect them to willingly walk away or say “go ahead and break this up as it is good for whole?” You can see how political divisions evolve as well, especially with how important funding is to both parties.
One thing is very clear. This level of transparency is increasing, not decreasing, especially in critical systems or industries. This is true across industries. To build and finance important businesses in critical industries will have even more transparency every day. It is not all or nothing. When you are creating the new in these vital industries, we can start fresh with these 360 degree maps that are created by numerous people that would not normally be in the room together. That is what makes the whole process so magical. This trend makes it easier to see where the longer term risks are whether you are a corporate CEO, an investor or a supply chain manager. The needs and expectations of society are changing and evolving and businesses and investors need to evolve as well. For entrepreneurs and investors, it actually creates numerous opportunities to invest and create significant value. Science and technology are changing quickly and you can creatively and quickly develop many important and exciting businesses or services. In the past, maybe you have that one big company in an industry, but now you can have numerous products and services that create much more vitality for communities and society. There is actually less risk with this model, not more. It adds resiliency to the economy. It is better for the environment. It is more fair, more equitable and is more inclusive. It does, however, require rethinking the predominant business and investment models today as well as the best way to come together and align incentives for the different opportunities. This business and financial trend is more of an integrated approach. There will still be bigger companies and smaller local ones, but this can evolve more slowly, iteratively, and naturally than the approaches we use today. This is more of a business and economic model modeled after a living systems approach of what makes a system sustainable, regenerative and resilient.
In many ways, we are starting over with a clean slate with everything going on in the world. We have a chance to aggressively use this natural, systems-design based methodology. This methodology is revolutionary, not evolutionary compared to what we do today.
The following article was written by Michael Pollan, a writer, teacher and activist. This is a great article on the current food system, taking a broad and integrated view. Rather than resisting the inevitable, it makes much more sense for people to embrace rather than fight this change in society. It will be a welcome change for most people. It will save capitalism, not destroy it. Change is inevitable. It is part of nature and part of life. It is time to go with the flow. https://michaelpollan.com/articles-archive/the-sickness-in-our-food-supply/