“What brings no benefit to the hive brings no benefit to the bee.” – Meditations 6.54

What can beehives teach entrepreneurs about being better entrepreneurs?

Let’s take a look:

An entrepreneur can choose to focus only on the bee… producing shrewd deals that undermine partners and maximise personal gain… to the detriment of the hive. This leads to having few friends, and desires that can’t be met despite increasing assets.

An entrepreneur can choose to focus on the hive… producing an environment for the group to thrive… so that the hive can take care of itself (the entrepreneur included). This leads not only to friendships and a trustworthy reputation, but the ability to stop hunting and still be taken care of.

Marcus Aurelius used the beehive metaphor to distinguish something important. That while the individual pursues virtue and “the good life” (as Zeno of Citium called it), we should do so while staying focused on the common good of the communities we belong to. For our own sake, and for theirs.