Dealing with 2021 uncertainty

Lots of predictions out there these days. At Energize we get to see potential future outcomes… and I have to admit that it is hard to make a high-probability prediction.

I’ve read predictions about a COVID resurgence, cloud’s continued dominance, hyper-inflation, remote work, Miami, accelerated industrial and workplace transformation, digital healthcare, digital currency… the list goes on.

The dispersion of outcomes and how they will affect our team, the portfolio, and the broader economic economic environment is a bit overwhelming.

My response to this unknown is two-fold:

1- Know your Circle of Competence

This helps define parameters for focus. Knowing my area of influence and competence makes it clear where I can be a well-positioned expert on a topic. When something distant comes up, knowing when not to swing or even get involved in a topic can be incredibly freeing.

2- Invest in what you can Control: People. Process.

People and process are the two fundamental assets for an investment firm. Everything else is extra.

At Energize we make pretty substantial investments in our team’s growth, communication channels, and feedback structures. Every team member has access to a professional coach for 2-3x per month meetings. Every team member receives feedback from their manager 2x / year with a full 360 review process at year end. We ask co-investors, entrepreneurs, portfolio companies, and LPs for feedback. And one of the most unique trends we established was a 9:30am daily meeting… and I think we only missed it 3 times from mid-March through the end of the year. Showing up for the team and building trust together is a muscle we are developing.

We evaluate what procedures are working and what is no longer a positive contributor at our stage. Flexibility in process development and learning as we grow is an area of budding strength here at Energize.

I hope you have a great 2021. Stay grounded, flexible, and invest in your people/process.