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Why Capital Deployed Means Almost Nothing in Community Building

community building

The overly-simplistic measurement tool for community building provides bad signals to good people. Investments made or capital deployed are the typical measure of success for a community. There are many reasons why capital is used and I will delve into that in another post. Today, I argue that using capital as the primary measure of a community’s success is the wrong view to base your entire community building strategy around. But Chris, isn’t capital the most telling characteristic of a community’s health? No, community measures like total capital invested provide no underlying insight into what is actually happening in your community. Let us take a look at two different communities. Community #1: Population of 800,000+ Diverse general population but not entrepreneurs and working silo’s 100-150 active, full-time growth companies Long tradition of business building (not necessarily entrepreneurship) Raised $20M this last quarter ($15M from one breakout company (led by a regional VC) and $3M from another). Community #2: Population of 250,000 Not a diverse population but a diverse set of entrepreneurs who work together 50+ active, full-time growth companies No record of sustainable business building of any kind Raised $10M this last quarter (over 15 companies and only 1 at

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