Thoughts on the 2013 NEXUS GYS

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Upon arriving at the NEXUS Global Summit on Innovative Philanthropy and Social Innovation this past weekend, I found myself reflecting on a long held personal belief. I have always felt strongly that anyone can find a way to buy something for a dollar and sell it for two. This model equates to a business. However, I have never had any desire to simply create a business. I have worked on building companies. Certainly, companies buy and manufacture at a mark-up, sell ad space, and take transaction based revenue, but they also grow. Companies create jobs, offer careers for skilled individuals, bring opportunities for complementary products and services, and together create entire industry sectors.

Hence, companies doing well often scale up. They are rooted in innovation and routinely disrupt convention. They open offices around the globe and create more jobs and wealth, all while offering something useful to the world.

But, in case you haven’t noticed, the world is not doing well. There are inverse metrics all around us: record population increase accompanied by stagnant job growth, innovation with increased technology costs, and lower wages alongside food and gas price inflation.

So, companies doing well must now be given a larger mandate: to do good. These days, it is not sufficient to operate simply as a company. Those scaling up must use their power and influence for good, all while attempting to halt this seemingly incalculable downward spiral of our current world environment and outlook.

This sentiment is exactly what NEXUS Global Summit is all about. Doing good is not a luxury, nor is it a corporate goodwill budget line item. It is an absolute, immediate necessity, and bringing together scaling companies, thought leaders, and institutions from around the world, for four nine-hour days, is exactly how it’s going to get done.