A self-made, totally bare businessman

After a year of living among the tribes of Tibet, Indonesia, and New Zealand, it became quite clear to me: I would dedicate the rest of my life to changing the business world. It was there that power rested, and it was there that most of the decisions that ended up being problematic for “people and the environment” were made. Instead of chemical engineer, social worker, or journalist, I would become a businessman, just like my father. So, how did it come about? It was probably a number of events, which were mostly focused on ethics, morality, and knowledge in general rather than on the entrepreneurship that led me there. The world had seemed so large and intangible when I first began my journey, but that was no longer true. I didn’t feel as small, or even as powerless, and that was maybe due largely in part to all the encounters I had had with people and cultures that were far more separated from our own way of life than I‘d ever imagined possible.

Facing mortal fear changes you. It happened to me three times among the tribes.

Being grossly abused changes you. It happened to me twice among the tribes.

Experiencing your own resolute when facing people who mean you harm changes you. It happened to me twice among the tribes.

My plan was to prove that I, through investments in my company’s “people and the environment”, could reach a higher profitability, growth, and credibility, and in that way influence the economic interests that control the business world to move closer to a more morally-sound way of thinking.

After making various calculations about the number of people I could directly influence through practical action that would, over a long period of time, clearly show an alternative way of operating, I concluded that it absolutely was purposeful. Even if I, in the worst case scenario, could influence only the individuals that my own company had contact with, then that would still be enough. My timeframe was 30 years. The first five years would be dedicated to simultaneous business, culture, and organization development, and the last 25 to more growth than I had thought imaginable. That was my strategy.

The sub-target was to have 25 employees as soon as possible, and by the 10- year mark to be the leading company with a unique operation that would always arouse people’s interests.

Looking back, I smile just as much as I think you, the reader, might be smiling right now. Yes, I was young. A young and almost completely inexperienced businessman suddenly deciding to dedicate thirty years of his life to creating a better type of company than anyone’s ever created and through it try to affect society. A person who up until then had considered businesses as being the worst expression of exploitation of the working class.

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