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In business, the market gives you feedback in real time. Your sales figures tell you what's working, what isn't, and how you need to change. If you don't listen to the feedback, you go belly up. In philanthropy, there is no market.
Philanthropy is often seen as society's risk capital. That means the onus is on philanthropists, nonprofit leaders and social entrepreneurs to innovate. But philanthropic innovation is not just about creating something new. It also means applying new thinking to old problems, processes and systems.
When time permits, I try to see interesting people in the cities I visit. In Seattle, I met Paul Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft, who is shy in personality but flamboyant in his philanthropy.
Philanthropy is involved with basic innovations that transform society, not simply maintaining the status quo or filling basic social needs that were formerly the province of the public sector.
It's important to think good, speak good, and do good. If we want to see positive change in the world, then we need to connect to goodness. I try in everything I do, both in business and philanthropy, to make a positive change and do that by doing good.