EVERYTHING IS BROKEN
Everything. That’s why it’s such a great time to be alive. We women have the chance, indeed the imperative, to create the new mindsets, the new models, and the new tools that will transform how we think of success, how we do business, and how we impact the world in a healthier way. We weren’t at the table for version 1.0, so let’s make sure we are there for world 2.0.
IT STARTS WITH EXPOSING FOUR OLD MINDSETS.
OLD MINDSET #1
I was once at a meeting along with a number of social entrepreneurs with the CEOs of the top three water companies. The entrepreneurs were pitching innovations that could significantly reduce water shortages that these companies should be looking at to support.
One of the CEOs said, “The average shelf life of a CEO today in the world is 3 years. In the first two quarters of my tenure, I get to make one bet. It better be right. It’s a multi-billion dollar bet.
So, all these little ideas you’re talking about? Not interested.”
OLD MINDSET #2
"WORK ALL THE TIME"
I was at a conference recently with 350 young entrepreneurs and a very celebrated 20-year-old young tech guy stood up and asked, “How many people here slept less than 6 hours last night?” Most of the hands went up.
When did it become a badge of honour not to sleep?
We are told consistently that if you’re going to be successful, you have to work 24/7.
OLD MINDSET #3
"MONEY IS SCARCE"
We have entire TV programs—Dragon’s Den and Shark Tank for example -where entrepreneurs stand in front of people with money and perform like caged animals.
Money isn’t scarce. What’s scarce is great ideas by awesome entrepreneurs.
Crowdfunding - which didn’t even exist 5 years ago - raised $5B last year, with growth projected to be $100B by 2025.
OLD MINDSET #4
"WINNER TAKES ALL"
We put a hero on the cover of every magazine, the one who won. The venture capitalists’ model is to make ten bets, throw ten Hail Marys, and hope one works. That’s success? One out of ten?
Women would never have created a model like this. Can you imagine having ten kids and saying we’ll bet it all on Susie?
The winner-take-all model has created a world where 85 people have the same wealth as 3.5 billion people.
THE SPECULATION ECONOMY
These four mindsets are a key reason we now have a speculation economy that is 50 times bigger than our value creation economy. Back when people created and bought goods and services, there was value creation. Now, the vast majority of our economy is based on betting on whether something is going to go up or down and creating new derivatives and increasingly complex bundles of products. This complexity was one of the reasons the market crashed in 2008. When that crash happened, we somehow found 13 trillion dollars to bail out the banks in a matter of three weeks. To give you some perspective on that number, 13 trillion dollars would allow us to live without poverty on the planet for 600 years.
We live in a giant casino, betting all over the place. And who shows up for this game? Mostly white men. Even at an international conference on diverse perspectives for a new economy, of the 117 speakers, only 12 were women. In fact, one of the guys featured in the conference's ads crashed the Greek economy. In another example, a recent conference on policy for women in the Middle East saw zero women in attendance.
So where are the women? A popular myth about why there aren’t more women in the game is that we’re not confident enough. Not bold enough. Risk averse. But maybe it’s because we’re refusing to play this game because we know it’s broken. One of the biggest challenges for women at work is childcare. Instead of fixing childcare, the major tech companies decided that they would pay for you to freeze your eggs so that you could stay at your desk longer and be more productive.
Women are playing a different game, proving the old models don’t have to be our reality. Last year two thirds of the businesses started in Canada were by women. Sixty-eight percent of those businesses did not need outside capital, and 73% are already profitable. We run our businesses sustainably, on our own terms.
There’s a new dawn emerging. I’m sure you can feel it. The largest wealth transfer in history is happening in the next ten years, and women will have control of 75% of that wealth. We’re starting businesses at twice the pace of men, and we make 80% of purchasing decisions. We are able to make decisions about what kind of world we want, how we buy, and where we want to put our money.
And this wealth transfer is happening at a time when a whole new financing regime is emerging. Crowdfunding. Women are four times as likely to be funded in a crowdfunding campaign than through traditional means.
AN ACT OF RADICAL GENEROSITY
THIS IS THE PERFECT MOMENT TO PROVE THERE’S ANOTHER WAY
Imagine a world where…
Winner doesn’t take all
Abundance is the norm
Resources are used wisely
Business is a vehicle to have a thriving life
Young girls honour their dreams and women are supported in the manifestation of their dreams
Economies create thriving communities
We can create a world that is affirming for everyone
That’s why SheEO is launching a new campaign, An Act of Radical Generosity. To begin, one thousand women will contribute one thousand dollars each. That’s a million dollars crowdfunded. We’re going to pick 10 ventures run by women that are about new models, new mindsets, and new solutions for a better world and help them succeed. The plan is to take this model, and roll it out city by city over the next few years. Our goal is to get to a million women gifting 1000 dollars each by 2020. A billion dollars of capital.
- Radical generosity. The $1000 is a gift, not an investment. And the 1000 women will open up their networks, leverage their buying power and share their wisdom and experience to support the success of the 10 ventures we collectively select.
- Peer based financing. The ten ventures that get selected will actually decide amongst themselves how to divide up the money. There are only two rules. One is you can’t give it all to one venture, and you can’t divide it up evenly. The women themselves have to figure out who needs what.
Rather than winner takes all, we all succeed. Win-win-win.
It starts with women being radically generous with each other.