I would like to illustrate our discussion of entrepreneurial vision in this article using the example of a very successful investment.
A visionary named R. approached us to help him to fulfill his life’s work. R. has worked for many years as a consultant/project manager on large projects like the restructuring of ING and the repositioning of Nike in Europe. His last job was to house a large group of Poles and Romanians for a large supermarket chain.
R. has managed many projects for a large agency and has a lot to do with young people between 18 and 30. After many conversations, he discovered a definite trend. Young adults are increasingly choosing to live for themselves and are continuing to live on their own for longer. This means there is a growing demand for affordable and adequate housing for this age group.
Despite the fact that this trend was established many years ago, there have been no changes in the housing market to meet the growing demand for affordable and adequate housing. This has led young adults to live with their parents longer and longer or opt for lower quality housing.
R. decided to address this issue and 3-4 years ago he stopped working as a consultant, sold his house and agreed with his wife to realize his concept. This meant that he had less money to live on and he was not sure whether Change = achieves success.
R. also found that the traditional ways of working, living and learning were inadequate for the needs of the target group. Work is regulated by employers, learning by schools and housing by housing associations. R’s concept is based on an integrated approach to living, working and learning. The most motivated young people are selected to work at a large employment agency and can qualify for an affordable home. Learning is not for training but for life, i.e. how to develop further in society, how to deal with tax returns, municipal assessments, etc.
Affordability coupled with the quality is possible if a large number of homes are built in one project. Change= accommodation for 500 young adults in the first project. A special building will be built and a community established full of social dynamics. Obviously, the local authorities are involved in the project and have been helpful in the entire licensing process.
Before the end of the year, the building will be started on the project and then the mission will have been fulfilled. Change = success achieved. The first smart building entity for 500 young people will be up and running in the Netherlands in 2015.