Density of Trust and Clarity of Purpose: Building the independent business communities of tomorrow, today

An AccelerateUs: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the Local Industrial Revolution conversation. 

How does entrepreneurship build a community of people who have the ability to move their city forward — not just economically, but in every way? How does a community accelerate positive change in its systems, processes and structures?  What does a retired U.S. Army General have to do with any of this anyways?

I can’t think of many people who could tie such deep and disparate issues together- and make sense of them – than Enoch Elwell, founder of CO.STARTERS.  This conversation was a little extra special to me because Enoch and I have a habit of sort of flying past each other at conferences and the like.  And there’s never enough time to explore his thinking on important issues.  But when he’s at home on Lookout Mountain south of Chattanooga, that can happen (when the internet holds up.)



You can watch our conversation above, or listen to it on Soundcloud here.  You can also pick up this and other AccelerateUs interviews on Stitcher or Spotify as part of the Building a Wise Local Economy podcast.

One of the things that I always appreciate about Enoch is that he thinks beyond silos more easily than almost anyone else I know.  In this conversation, Enoch and I discuss

  • changing how communities work vs. building parallel systems that show an alternative way,
  • Building and leveraging a density of trust and relationships as a path to re-organizing how people work together, and transforming their potential.
  • Finding clarity of purpose, even when pursuing massive system change, as the key way to accelerate the growth of density of trust.
  • Leveraging information technology to make all this work at a level we’ve never been able to before.

And I learned that there was one more little one in the Elwell household than the last time I looked.  Sounds like another reason to talk to Enoch more often.

You can learn more about CO.STARTERS at  You can see, and make a reservation for, the mind-blowing tree houses that we mentioned at  And the book that Enoch mentions by Gen. Stanley McChrystal is Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World.

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