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Bold Moves: How to Make the Audacious Decision
Last time on the Kinesis blog, we explored what it means to be bold in business — as a way to expand horizons, change perceptions, and foster new connections.
And at the end of the day, boldness is defined by our actions: Casting a clear vision, making big decisions, and taking risks. These trailblazers, who dare to venture into the unknown and challenge the status quo, are the ones who drive monumental change.
In other words, they are the architects of "Bold Moves."
What drives bold moves in business?
Business landscapes are constantly shifting — evolving with each new trend, technology, and global event. In such an environment, staying in your comfort zone might feel like the safest option, but it can actually lead to stagnation and missed opportunities. Embracing change, taking calculated risks, and pursuing uncharted territory are the hallmarks of visionary leaders who make bold moves.
Focus on what you can control, now.
Meet David Kahl, ergonomics industry pioneer and founder of the office furniture maker, Fully. In 2019, David was on top of the world: He’d spent 13 years growing Fully to $54mm in revenue, all bootstrapped — and had completely disrupted the industry with ergonomic, sustainable, and beautifully designed office furniture. He then sold the business to the largest office furniture company in the world, and looked forward to watching his legacy continue to grow and thrive.
That is… until the acquiring company shut Fully down. Suddenly, his legacy — the brand David had nurtured and saw as his mark on the world — came to an abrupt and cataclysmic end.
But from those ashes emerged a profound realization: David's legacy wasn't confined to a brand or a balance sheet. It was nestled within the "how" and "why" of Fully — the audacious decisions, the right actions taken, and the lasting impact on people's lives. Fully disrupted the ergonomics industry, compelling even competitors to reevaluate their environmental practices. It offered a workspace that celebrated diversity, innovation, and individuality. Through David’s vision, Fully became more than just an office furniture company, but a launching pad for human potential.
Legacy isn't a distant aspiration, but the sum of the choices made in the present moment, where we wield true control. It's about embracing the now, where bold moves are born, and surrendering the rest to the unpredictable currents of time.
Address your industry’s biggest challenges head-on.
Helen Anderson, the visionary force behind HelloCare, understood the power of a bold move when she set out to revolutionize the senior care industry — by giving aging seniors independence in their own homes.
But caregiving requires caregivers… and the healthcare industry is notorious for abysmal employee engagement and retention. The average annual turnover rate for senior living facilities is a whopping 128% — with some facilities reporting rates as high as 300%. (Imagine needing to replace your entire staff…. not once, but three times in a given year.)
For decades, this has been accepted as an unfortunate inevitability in senior care — not only increasing expenses (in recruiting, training, and the opportunity costs of lost expertise), but also leading to lower quality care for seniors themselves. Helen recognized what others didn’t: that an engaged staff means long-term continuity of care relationships and health outcomes… so engagement is worth investing in.
Helen built a company that fosters resilience for some of our most vulnerable populations — including not only senior clients, but also its own workforce. Many of her employees are single mothers, often without college degrees and with limited financial prospects — so she seeks to elevate their lives beyond the workplace. In addition to paying her team well, she’s also built a culture around personal growth and giving them the tools to build financial stability.
As a result, HelloCare’s turnover rate has dropped below 20% — an achievement unheard of in this space — but Helen won’t stop until this becomes the industry standard. She envisions a world where this work is not just about providing care, but empowering lives.
And none of that would be possible if she’d just thrown up her hands and accepted this industry-wide challenge as unavoidable.
Dare to defy categorization.
With the world facing an urgent climate crisis, it’s hard to overstate our need to reduce our carbon emissions… nor the enormity of that task. But Garrett Benisch co-founded OurCarbon with the audacious goal of reducing carbon emissions at scale.
OurCarbon harnesses the power of biomaterials to create sustainable production materials from previously overlooked sources — biosolids, food waste, and more — transforming them into finished goods, apparel, and accessories.
The uniqueness of Garrett's challenge lies in the absence of an existing category. He dares to promote a material that defies classification, one that the market has yet to fully comprehend or embrace. Just as Ford needed to frame the car as a horseless carriage to make it relatable, Garrett navigates the complexities of introducing an innovative material by establishing connections to what was once familiar.
This resonates deeply with any of us who are trying to offer something better to the market for which there is no PO, no budget line item, no routine Google search.
Ready to make a bold move?
What does it take to make bold moves in business? Bold moves aren't reserved for the select few; they're a choice available to every visionary leader ready to seize it. It's not about blindly jumping into the unknown; it's about calculated risk-taking, strategic thinking, and unyielding determination.
These bold leaders—Helen Anderson, David Kahl, and Garrett Benisch—are not outliers; they are a call to action. Their stories illuminate the path to reimagining industries, redefining legacies, and addressing global challenges head-on.
If you see a little of yourself in these stories, you won’t want to miss the Catalyst Summit on September 7-8. You’ll hear from David Kahl, Helen Anderson, and Garrett Benisch, as well as a number of other speakers and panelists taking bold steps with their businesses — including how it worked out, what’s yet to be determined, and where to next.
But space is limited, so be sure to claim your spot!