Private-equity and venture-capital firms compete for investments on more than their ability to provide capital. They win deals on their reputations for nurturing the companies they invest in. But with portfolio managers spread thin among multiple investments they have little time to develop—much less apply—a coherent expression of why their firm stands out.

Collective Intelligence recently brainstormed with a VC to deliver best practice customized to the individual companies it invests in. The goal is bumping up return on invested capital by transmitting best practice without a costly investment of partner time.

CI will identify the firm's preferred approach to operational processes common in all young companies, which frequently waste an unknowable amount of money fashioning nonstandard solutions to obligatory functions like legal, accounting, governance, board notes and so forth. This inconsistency has immediate effect on leakage out of an investment.

More dramatically, CI can capture insights into strategy development and organization building unique to the investing firm. These intellectual assets can be adapted as a kind of custom consulting channel—delivered, for example, via streaming or interactive video. Secondary benefits of such codification will be articles and books that will raise the investor's profile among young companies.

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