Dollo’s Law, Brand & Teams

In evolution, organisms can’t re-evolve to a former state because the path that led to its former state was so complicated that the odds of retracing that exact path round to zero.

Say an animal has a tail, and then it evolves to lose its tail. The odds that it will ever evolve to regain a tail are nil, because the path that originally gave it a tail was so complex.

This affects businesses, too. There are things that, once lost, will likely never be regained, because the chain of events that created them in the first place can’t easily be replicated.

Brand is one. Good brands are hard to build, requiring the right product at the right time targeted to the right users who want a specific thing, produced the right way by the right people, all done with consistency. Once lost brand is very hard to regain, because the odds of building a successful brand in the first place were so low to begin with.

Teams can be another. Success is often personalized among one person, discounting how important members of their team were to winning. Many star employees have joined another firm, or gone out on their own, only to realize how much of their prior success was due to the unique team they were on, not necessarily their individual skill that can be replicated elsewhere.

There used to be a theory in Economics and used in Strategy - Domino effect. You take out the kingpin, whole edifice collapses. I do know of few startups as well as big who either out of lack of understanding or arrogance, pushed a Domino out... floundered for long till they found their footing after lot of opportunity cost.

Never lose a good man, Brand after all is built by individual , no committees.