Framework for realising potential
Regenerative investing is a practice of ‘realising potential’. All businesses have potential but the development of that potential emerges through the combination of the investor, investee, and the business context.
"We see regeneration as a necessity for our future. And regenerative investing as the creative force moving the economic and financial systems towards regeneration."
For Realising Potential
Discover the essence and potential of the investee business
Regenerative investing places ‘living systems thinking’ at its core. In a world where we are used to approaching almost everything we do mechanistically with little regard to the context, regenerative investing starts with deep understanding and care for the investee business and its context. It moves the investor-investee engagement from a superficial, returns-based conversation to a deep level of connection, where the investor is driven to discover and work with the essence and purpose of the investee business and its ecosystem.
Define the desired structural imprint
A business has an imprint on its ecosystem through its activities and its relationships. We can define a regenerative imprint by connecting to the essence of a business and its ecosystem (seeing it as a living system). This almost automatically moves the investor away from a mechanistic approach where, often, a predetermined view of how things should be is imposed with no regard to the context; to a collaborative approach where the investor focuses on seeing potential in the context the investee operates in, and aligns its activities to develop regenerative capability in the investee’s business and its ecosystem. This moves the business from extractive to creative.
Design the processes towards the desired structural imprint
One of the difficulties with designing for regeneration is that regeneration cannot be created, it can only be allowed. Our models have taught us how to design, then control events so as to create outcomes that we want. Any system designed in this way needs constant top-down control because left to itself, it will revert to its own way of functioning.
Regenerative investment design is based on understanding the principles of the phenomena that we are working with, then using iterations to work with the system’s self-organization property in order to arrive at a sustainable structural imprint. This process relies heavily on feedback and learning loops. The focus shifts from controlling to learning.
Develop capabilities to ensure regeneration
For businesses and individuals to function regeneratively within the Web of Life, they need to be able to hold the Whole even while operating at the specific level. Our Business Citizenship framework can provide guidance here.
In our world today, we have heavily focused on just one-half: the self-assertive (yang, masculine, left-brain) tendencies. We have not only diminished the integrative (yin, feminine, right-brain) tendencies, but in many cases devalued them and the persons expressing them. In effect, we have split the Whole. It is easy to see how this leads to degenerative outcomes.
Perhaps the most important principle of regenerative investing as a practice is that the regenerative work starts with the investor him/herself by building regenerative capability within him/her.
A regenerative-functioning of the person brings mind and heart, intellect and intuition, love and action, and individual and community together. We believe that bringing greater and greater integration into our lives will have far-reaching consequences, some of which could be: decreased conflict within ourselves therefore decreased friction in our relationships; a greater feeling of life-satisfaction and happiness; decreased cognitive dissonance in the individual and therefore in business and society.