WAY 32Build Foundations: Funding new platforms enables a variety of winning solutions to emerge and evolve.

About the Way

Moonshots are long journeys. Although betting on small wins helps show proof points that a moonshot is moving in the right direction, the long‐term decision is to lay the underpinnings for a moonshot's foundation. (See Way 1: Always Focus on the Long View.) Having a solid foundation in place creates the smooth road for the team's journey ahead and, more important, ensures that the moonshot is more than a one‐hit wonder. Building a foundation that extends beyond a single team or organization is a critical step when developing a set of world‐changing solutions. As a simple example, although a moonshot may be to land the first human on the moon—or next on Mars—the long‐term foundation is to ensure future space trips and interplanetary exploration continues.

A foundation is interpreted differently based on the moonshot goal. For some teams, the underlying foundation may be to develop a talent pool so that the critical skills become more readily available from the midterm on. Without more skilled people, future efforts will stall considerably. For other moonshots, the foundation needs to be a tech platform or open‐source community, which provides essential sharing of knowledge and practices among early members. Or maybe it is a common set of standards. For example, Tesla helped boost the growth of the electronic vehicle market by freely sharing its patents with ...

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