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Be the Solution: How Entrepreneurs and Conscious Capitalists Can Solve All the Worlds Problems Hardcover – March 16, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-0470450031 ISBN-10: 0470450037 Edition: 1st

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Be the Solution: How Entrepreneurs and Conscious Capitalists Can Solve All the Worlds Problems + Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business + Firms of Endearment: How World-Class Companies Profit from Passion and Purpose
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 374 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (March 16, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470450037
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470450031
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #508,015 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"If Be the Solution is a bold title, the subtitle is even bolder: How Entrepreneurs and Conscious Capitalists Can Solve All the World's Problems. . . Author Strong's point, however, is not just that there is plenty of room for idealism in the capitalist system. His main argument is that, to the degree that the world's problems can be solved at all, conscious capitalism is the only possible solution. For example, in the chapter called "Solving All Environmental Problems," you'll find the best argument I've ever read on why government is part of the problem, and why property rights are fundamental to the solution. If you know some young, or old, person who would like to change the world, Be the Solution would be an ideal present." (Barron's)

From the Inside Flap

What if the distinction between business and doing good vanished? What if all those who engaged in business were committed to a deeper purpose, and all those committed to doing good were entrepreneurial and enterprising? What would it take for a world of seven billion such people to solve all the world's problems?

More and more people are looking for meaning and purpose in their lives as employees, as consumers, and as investors. More and more people have more than enough material goods and are more interested in the qualities of the goods they buy; in the experiences associated with the services they provide and buy; in the way the companies they buy from act as citizens; and in self-actualization—rising up Maslow's hierarchy. As an increasing percentage of the population reaches the point at which they no longer need more stuff, what will they do, how will they live their lives?

If you are one of these people, wondering where to go from here, how to "be the solution" in the twenty-first century, Be the Solution provides an original perspective on how to create a better world. Focused entirely on entrepreneurial and Conscious Capitalist solutions to the challenges and opportunities facing humanity, Be the Solution shows how the entrepreneurial passion to create a better world, in combination with Conscious Capitalist business practices, can solve far more of the world's problems than any other approach.

In combination with leading Conscious Capitalists such as John Mackey writing on "Conscious Capitalism," leading social entrepreneurs such as Muhammad Yunus writing on "Social Business," and leading legal reform experts such as Hernando de Soto writing on "Is Economic Freedom for Everyone?," entrepreneurial educator Michael Strong lays out a philosophical, social, and legal framework for a FLOW vision through which all problems may be solved entrepreneurially.

FLOW, Inc., is an organization cofounded by John Mackey and Michael Strong to promote Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's concept of flow as optimal experience—the state in which we are so immersed in challenging, creative activity that we forget that time is passing. To be engaged in flow activities is happiness itself. Whether we are creators of enterprises or entrepreneurially creative within our life as employees, we can embody the entrepreneurial spirit and, in the words of Michelangelo, "criticize by creating."

In addition, FLOW refers to the global flow of goods, services, capital, humans, ideas, and culture, in a positive win-win-win world based on love rather than fear. Combining the best of the positive psychology and human potential movements with the best of free market thinking, FLOW offers a unique perspective on how to Be the Solution in the twenty-first century.


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Customer Reviews

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Furthermore, I loved Strong's optimistic and idealistic vision of the future.
Lloyd R. Minick
If you want to contribute to making a better world and you have an indomitable entrepreurial spirit, this is the book for you.
Herbert Gintis
It does seem like we do allow cultural innovation to take place in every realm of life except education.
Tariq Ausaf

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Lloyd R. Minick on September 19, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I thoroughly enjoyed this inspiring and informative book, and have recommended it to many of my friends. As a college student I was constantly surrounded by people blaming free market capitalism for the world's most pressing problems; those same people rarely had any insightful or practical plans for fixing those problems. However, this book offers an approach to solving the world's problems that resonated with me deeply. Be the Solution argues that economic freedom and entrepreneurial opportunity are the best conditions for innovation, wealth-creation, and increased prosperity for all, and the author, Michael Strong, provides many examples of how government intervention in the market place has been responsible for many of the world's most pressing problems. The book offers many examples of socially conscious businesses that are doing wonderful good in the world; I especially enjoyed the chapter by Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus, founder of the Grameen Bank and their micro-credit system for helping the poor. The chapter by John Mackey about Conscious Capitalism provides an enlightening and comprehensive view of business and how it can be a vehicle for doing good in the world, while also being profitable and creating value for all constituents. I thought the ideas that Strong presented regarding environmental trusts, and in general how security of property rights and entrepreneurial solutions to the tragedy of the commons dilemma are the most promising ways to protect the environment, were delightfully insightful and promising. Furthermore, I loved Strong's optimistic and idealistic vision of the future. I would recommend this book to anybody who is serious about social change. I am grateful to Michael Strong and all of the contributing authors.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Tariq Ausaf on February 23, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In short this is an awesome book! Quite Intense. It is a must read for every business (small or large) in the world. I am a businessman and have been contemplating so many random ideas and visions ... but in this book, Michael Strong has provided concrete definitions to these ideas. The discussion on how the electronic media has completely taking over our perceptions of reality, especially for the K-12 group is right on. Never seen it articulated so accurately. Interestingly, the author's focus and emphasis on creating an environment of love and respect is quite crucial. It does seem like we do allow cultural innovation to take place in every realm of life except education. The refresher on Maslow's Hierarchy was awesome and John Mackey's "New Paradigm for Business" is great. The viable concepts of Conscious Capitalism are fantastic and the vision of FLOW as an entrepreneurial solution to the world's problems is a clear direction that all businesses should understand and adopt in a way that fits their business model and yet helps solve larger problems. Read it and you would agree.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Herbert Gintis on May 12, 2009
Format: Hardcover
If you want to contribute to making a better world and you have an indomitable entrepreurial spirit, this is the book for you. Our is the age of doing good by doing well. The notion that market competition is all about greed is just a monumental error that you can help a new generation to avoid.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Donald S. Wilde on April 10, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Michael Strong's "Be the Solution" is one of those paradigm-changers like "Think and Grow Rich"... it's as if "Grow Rich With Peace of Mind" was Napolean Hill's first book!

Starting from the point that life on Earth really isn't as bad off -- with statistics! -- as the gloom and doom politicians and media make it out to be, Michael and his fellow FLOW entrepreneurs share a vision for the positive transformation of the world... starting today, with you.

Read this book... and you'll create enough monetary and inner wealth in your life that neither you nor any hundred of your friends and family will ever have to steal it!
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Jerome Tuccille on March 13, 2009
Format: Hardcover
In BE THE SOLUTION, Michael Strong (with an assist from John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market) makes a case for common-sense, do-it-yourself, entrepreneurial capitalism in a way you've never seen before. His discussion of free enterprise as a way of doing good in the world is as far removed from today's headlines, featuring greed-is-good corporate capitalism, as the America of today is from the ideals laid down by our founding fathers. The message contained here is both simple and refreshing: if you want to solve the problems of the world--hunger, sickness, deprivation--help others ignite their entrepreneurial spirit in a culture of freedom. The organization that Strong and Mackey co-founded to accomplish precisely those ends, FLOW, stands for Freedom Lights Our World. And that says it all. Freedom coupled with entrepreneurial energy is the main driver of human advancement. This book is a must read for anyone interested in a radical, jargon-free, free enterprise approach to relieving human misery.

Jerome Tuccille, author
IT USUALLY BEGINS WITH AYN RAND, DILLERLAND, GALLO BE THY NAME, and other books
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Heather on December 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I really enjoyed this book. Finally a olive branch I can present to my more leftist-oriented friends, without feeling that I am compromising my free-market principles (just to keep things pleasant) by keeping silent during political or philosophical discussions. The person who delivers the message does matter, and the persons who contribute to this book have certainly proven their "care about the world and environment" credentials.
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