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The Rainforest's Business

The top-down approach to business doesn’t work in a rapidly changing environment. We need to shift our paradigms from the traditional military hierarchy model to alternative ideas we can learn from nature. For example, social insects are a mother lode of stories about distributed, instant decision making by ad-hoc teams based on the emerging opportunities and threats at hand. Leaf cutter ants have tons to teach us - some intriguing lessons about how the colony trims its ranks during lean times. From the plant world, the symbiosis of mycorrhizal fungi with plant roots underpins the nutrient cycling of the entire forest - it is cheaper for the roots to "outsource" the nutrient gathering to armies of underground fungi in exchange for cheap sugars than to do the gathering themselves. When we open our eyes to nature, we see many varied ways to learn and apply what we learn to succeed in business.

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