The Next Evolution of VC — Venture Talent

Image courtesy of Pixabay

We’ve all heard of venture capital firms — they’re the guys who have enough money to risk investing in startups. Some of the big names include 3i, Advanced Technology Ventures, Accel Partners, and Andreessen Horowitz, to name a few. But like any type of business, stagnation in VC can only be avoided with innovation. Enter the next evolution of VC: Venture Talent.

On March 16th, 2017, the organization I belong to, AlignedWorks LLC, became incorporated as a “Venture Talent” organization. Simply put, instead of investing primarily capital, the members of AlignedWorks invest talent. So what does this look like, exactly?

Venture Talent: a collaborative method of investment that utilizes individual skills, motivations, and time margin to collectively produce an expedited growth process.

All of us are gifted with a certain set of talents — things at which we are skilled, by which we are motivated to succeed when we undertake them. All of us have time margin of some form (for some it’s 2am; for others it’s every Friday) that can be used productively, or not. The question AlignedWorks asks is, “Why not use our talents/motivations and time margin productively?”

AlignedWorks is a community of individuals who know the motivations and talents of each other so well that we can build “dream teams” of entrepreneurs given the demands of a proposed project. We are successful because we provide an environment that is both high trust and high talent.

Further, AlignedWorks connects high social innovation to business development in a way that serves people where profit margins or market potential may be too small to attract the capital investment that drives most early-phase adoption. Customers help develop our businesses, and our businesses work with customers to develop goods and services they want. In this way, AlignedWorks is for professionals who want to maximize their impact for the common good.

The vast majority of our workforce today lives in a low-trust, low-talent space. With the invention of the gig economy, a small percentage of the workforce is able to live in a space that is high talent, but unfortunately low trust. There are a few organizations that are high trust but low talent (something like a rotary club), and sadly only a fraction of the workforce can truly say they function with high trust and high talent — until AlignedWorks.

Let’s say Alice, an AlignedWorks member, has a startup idea about a mobile learning app. To build such an app, Alice needs a particular set of skills represented in her team— like mobile programming, educational design, a branding, and perhaps someone skilled in marketing. Using AlignedWorks’ Venture Talent investment method, Alice knows precisely who she needs on her team and how much time margin they have, making the beginning phases of her project speed by.

AlignedWorks is innovating more than the classic VC startup method, however. Currently, we are utilizing a chaordic method of leadership and development, which can be difficult to precisely audit, track, and maintain. To solve these problems, we are exploring the realm of blockchain governance and rights management, and expect to make a major partnership announcement in the next month.

Venture Talent could very well be the next big thing in the venture community, because instead of utilizing impersonal fiat, it utilizes the skills and motivations of humanity. Is there a more valuable investment currency than that?

If you’d like to know more about AlignedWorks or about the ideas, structure, and governance behind Venture Talent, feel free to contact me at In the meantime, be on the lookout for more Venture Talent news from me!

Jon works for AlignedWorks LLC, a Venture Talent Organization in Washington DC. Enjoyed this article? Click the 💚 to help other people find it. If you’d like to start investing in cryptocurrency, the easiest way is with Coinbase. Check out this link — it’s my referral link — and get started now!