Path to Accelerated Innovations
Featuring Raymond Brimble, Founder and CEO of Seed/Pod Holdings LLC Impact Investments, and Cato Felán III, CEO of La Hoja Capital Management Cannabis Fund, last week’s Global Shift Dialogue explored innovation in various industries. Here are some key insights on next-level industries from Raymond and Cato:
Observations of Accelerated Innovations in Businesses
- Businesses should not only be experimental with their products, but also considerate of the market. Cato encourages businesses to test their innovative ideas and products in new private markets before launching them in broader markets. By doing so, businesses have the chance to respond to the feedback and refine their products before unveiling it to the public at large.
- When businesses repurpose existing resources, they learn to streamline the research and development process. When an organization has the ability to seamlessly incorporate retooling practices, they can create a profitable market in an efficient manner.
- Fundamentally, businesses should emphasize the value of human capital. As an angel investor, Raymond supports the people who drive new ideas to marketable products and present realistic paths to growth.
Involvement in Innovative Fields
- Free access to the internet provides readily available information about various industries. Thus it is much easier to research and form connections with professionals in your industry, and you can demonstrate to potential connections that you can take initiative by getting involved with your field of interest.
- Additionally, it is important to educate yourself on the cultural challenges innovative industries may face. When you understand those unique challenges, you can better present your product and further comprehend how the market might react to it.
- Acknowledging the hardships that follow innovations, Cato reminded us to not internalize rejection and failure. Instead, he emphasized on quickly recovering and learning from one’s failure.
- When conducting research on innovative industries that you are interested in working in, look for an alignment between their products and their public ESG strategies. Since consumers’ knowledge of innovative products is limited, it is important for these companies to publicize their ESG strategies to gain momentum and support in the market. Furthermore, having occurrences where the company repurposed themselves to push ESG into the forefront may entice people to work in these higher risk industries.
- Innovative businesses are enthusiastic about hiring on a regular basis. Raymond and Cato encourage students to take a chance in exploring career opportunities in innovative fields.
- While these innovative businesses may face a lot of social, cultural, and financial challenges, an opportunity to work in these companies would expand one’s perspective on careers.
There exists a stigma around innovative behaviors. Afraid of judgment and failure, innovative businesses often have trouble getting started. However, companies like La Hoja Capital Management are taking the initiative to combat stereotypes against cannabis, a highly stigmatized product. Cato’s firm works to establish professional investment standards in the global cannabis economy and in doing such is a model for how to innovate in a new market. La Hoja’s success shows the potential innovative businesses have in the global economy. Upon seeing the success of Cato’s business, I saw a promising prospect in careers within innovative industries.
Searching for internships, I am constantly advised to seek employment at larger companies. Focused on the concept of career stability, I found myself applying for larger firms and passing over opportunities in startups. My fear of career instability and anxiety over judgement from future employers prevented me from seeing the appeals of working in an innovative company. Looking back, I wish that I had taken the time to explore these businesses and broaden my own perspective on innovative fields. I would definitely recommend students to be adventurous with their career decisions if it fits with what you see your longer career path being!
You can watch the talk here:
Written by Juolin Tsai, Intern at the Center for Global Business