Miguel Reynolds Brandao
I am a true believer in the power of entrepreneurship to create a better world. This depends on the vision, motivation and sensibility of the leading entrepreneurs.
Have you ever thought about the fact that being born, where you were born, your genetics, your health and your family are all factors that you didn’t choose? Did you know that these five factors alone determine more than 85% of who you are as a person and what you will achieve? Imagine if you were born in a war-torn country on the poverty line with no health care or basic education – would you have access to the same opportunities in life?
We are born equal but we are not born with equal access to opportunity. We have different genetics and health but we all deserve to be able to play by the same rules in the game of life.
I am talking about this because I passionately believe that if we are lucky with these five life determining factors then we have an obligation to use our luck and talent to create a fairer world for the majority that weren’t so lucky. I see entrepreneurship, like many other activities, as a type of mission. A mission by which we can provide better life chances and quality for both our current and future generations.
As an independent and curious mind I became an entrepreneur very early on in my life. In fact, I’ve always worked on my own ventures, with all the pros and cons involved. I was once the youngest in attendance at an event for young European entrepreneurs organised in Brussels by the EEC, a long time ago!
I’ve always been attracted to technology and innovation and fascinated by how many different ways it can improve our lives. I personally believe that there is little point in commencing with a new venture unless its impact is mutually positive, that is to say for both us the owners and our customers.
Building a company just to make money by selling products or services that don’t add true value to society is not of interest to me. I’ve always envisioned a simple method to try to help me predict the impact of any investment or venture I am considering.
And that is how the #SORGindex came to life.
The beauty of the SORG index is that is helps to us to easily predict, test, evaluate and compare alternative investment opportunities, so that we can focus on the one with greater positive impact. The good thing is that, those with the higher positive impact are also the ones with higher return on investment! So it compliments an innovative and sustainable strategy.
My most recent venture fits into this category perfectly: It is a useful product, an innovation that can improve the lives of its users globally; it’s fully natural, renewable and it provides work opportunities to both skilled and unskilled people, locally and globally. As well as being efficient in its distribution needs and business model, it’s a highly attractive business that will demonstrate that sustainable entrepreneurship is fun, useful and can build a better world.
But what if we want to go even further than simply raise curiosity? What if we wanted to make lasting and transformative change to the way businesses are run and investment decisions are made?
This is why we’ve envisioned a new business ownership model that turns the traditionally three separate stakeholder groups of consumer community, internal team and company owners into one unique group of people with a shared interest. All of who love the products and services we develop and now have a vested interest in the success of the venture.
The change of roles for people in the community and team groups when they become owners introduces new dynamics to the organisation and its culture. Honest and transparent communication among all stakeholders becomes a new priority. Barriers and silo working are reduced. Communication flows. Everyone is fully engaged in creating and developing a high quality product or service that they want to use themselves.
If everyone is directly involved, interested and benefiting from the company’s outcome, then it seems reasonable to conclude that the result of this intense cooperation will result in a better product or service.
So imagine that fans of our products or services no longer simply consume and use them. Now we are creating a new opportunity for them to both participate directly in the development of the products but also benefit from a share of the profits too. As long as we keep the model exclusive to real fans (and not people only interested in purely financial return), the potential is huge.
Today, our model might be seen as a crazy idea or utopian vision, but perhaps that is what we are pursuing. There is one way to find out…