One of the greatest scientific advances in the past half-century was the discovery of the ’’trophic cascade’’. It is a process that starts at the top of the food chain and goes down to the end and explains their connection.
People in business are not always aware that their decisions, their reactions, but also the reactions they encounter, are not isolated reactions but represent rationally designed moves to achieve the set goal. Or so it should be.
In 1995. Scientists in the United States decided to settle one national park with wolves. There have been no wolves in that national park for almost 70 years. As a result, deer multiplied in huge numbers, which negativelly affected vegetation and the entire eco system began to suffer over time.
When the wolves were brought to Yellowstone National Park, things started to change very quickly. Those sensitive will say, why would anyone bring in bloodthirsty wolves that kill many species. Yet, on the other hand, they give life to many other species.
In the first 5-6 years, wolves began to affect deer numbers, but not only reduced them, but also began to affect their behaviour. Deer have started to move in certain areas and they started surpassing certain areas.
As it happened, vegetation responded first. Grass, shrubs and trees began to grow. New trees were soon settled by the birds. Then they increased the number of beavers because they had more trees to eat. They, as engineers of micro ecosystems, created habitat for new species, for bugs, fish, birds, ducks…
Wolves reduced number of coyotes and increased the number of rabbits. This has led to an increase in the number of eagles and foxes. The number of bears eating berries in new forests increased afterwards.
But most interestingly, the wolves changed the course of the rivers. Due to the new forests, the terrain became less scattered, the rivers less meandering, had a quieter flow and less water oscillation. And so, few wolves have infulenced the change of an entire ecosystem.
Just as nature has its laws, so the market has its invisible hand. Although the hand is ’’invisible’’, the task of every business person should be to recognize the market laws, to notice the changes that will occur through its actions and to give adequate action.
Given that we are living in a time of great change, it is not always easy to spot these regularities, but is is important not to lose sight of them. One of the most obvious examples of transformation in the market is the creation of an Uber business model. Suddenly, a small phenomenon, without a single vehicle, has established itself as one of the largest transportation companies in the world.
The moves that followed are well known to all of us, attempts to block it by stray deer failed, the company grew and grew. They applied the wrond steps in the first reactions.
Could the reactions have been wiser? Could they use the emergence of a new business model to create brand new and positive business eco systems? For now, all we have to do is wonder and time will tell.
But some occurences, not matter how illogical and surreal, if they have well-planned moves, they can lead us to the first goal.