A GigaOM post called The Values-Driven Startup by Dave Kashen caught our eye today. Dave blogs about organizational culture and describes himself variously as an entrepreneur, startup advisor, investor and leadership coach. He’s part of the world that has a reputation for putting profit before people but he’s asking questions that suggest he believes they’re not mutually exclusive. Listen in:
“In the startup world, thousands of entrepreneurs focus their ingenuity on finding ways to make millions of dollars. They look for market inefficiencies and focus on questions like: “Will consumers pay for this?” without asking “Will this make people’s lives meaningfully better?” It’s not that we shouldn’t try to make money, it’s just that money should be merely one of many factors we strive for, and it’s played far too central a role for far too long.”
What is the focus of your entrepreneurial energy? What are the factors that you strive for in your work?
Dave cites the words of educator, theologian and civil rights leader Howard Thurman at the end of his post: “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”
Do you agree with Thurman’s assessment of what the world needs?