Maximilian Winter is the Founder and General Partner at Harmonix Fund as well as a fourth-generation entrepreneur. Having successfully deployed two funds, Maximilian has invested in over 40 early-stage companies, resulting in an enterprise valuation of $5 billion. Maximilian invests in scalable technological breakthroughs to advance human health and scientific progress. This includes improving healthcare, accelerating life sciences, and helping create deep tech infrastructures—the building blocks for a healthy civilization.
Maximilian’s commitment to societal betterment extends to The Winter Family Foundation, a philanthropic organization he co-founded with his brother, Alexander Winter.
In this episode we discuss:
✅ Challenges embedded in our current healthcare system
✅ Science-fiction-sounding advances in bioresearch
✅ How life’s biggest hurdles can shape an individual’s path and purpose
3 episode takeaways (listen to the full episode for a lot more gems!):
1️⃣ The metrics we choose to measure, in our lives and in our companies, often turn into the foundation for how we define success. Unfortunately, we’ve defaulted to the easiest-to-measure metric: money. When this metric isn’t attached to anything meaningful, it rings hollow and causes the question, “Isn’t there more to life than this?” to play on repeat as we sit through soulless meeting after soulless meeting. But real success is more complicated and nuanced. Real success asks us to dig deeper with questions like: Are you making a positive impact? Are you giving more than you’re taking? Are you acting with integrity? Are you creating a future that’s better because you existed?
How would your relationship with work change if you changed the metric you used to measure success?
What if you were measuring how many lives you improved, how many endangered species you saved, or how many tons of plastic you diverted? If these questions awaken something in you, then consider where—in your life or business—you can start tracking metrics that align with your values.
2️⃣ Venture Capital has the ability to foreshadow our future because financiers are investing in the companies they believe will shape industries, or create new industries. They are placing a bet on what the future will look like.
What if collectively we only invested in companies that not only have a potential financial return, but that are also designed to improve people, society, and the planet? What if we agreed on impact metrics to intentionally stack the investment deck, and ensure the future will be better?
* * *
3️⃣ Maximilian asked about my experience with our healthcare system.
While I was in the Peace Corp, I was in a fatal bus accident. I lost a friend and I sustained a lot of injuries. I have a spiderweb of fractures spanning 7 bones in my face. One of the fractures splintered and punctured my brain lining, causing me to leak brain fluid out of my nose. I was in a hospital in Morocco for two weeks until it was safe to fly me to the USA for medical treatment.
I was lucky that my subsequent surgery to patch the hole in my brain lining was covered by workers’ compensation. If it hadn’t been, I would have had mountains of medical debt. The fact that in the USA you can not only have the misfortune of a serious illness or injury, but on top of that be saddled with financial ruin, highlights a very broken system.