When starting or joining a DAO, it is important to first ask yourself should this organization exist as a DAO? As it stands, DAOs are an open-ended concept – they can mean whatever the founding team wants them to mean. A few examples:
“A vehicle for regulatory arbitrage”. Otherwise known as doing something that’s otherwise legally gray or illegal. Is MakerDAO simply an unregulated bank that’s difficult for the government to shut down?
Raising money from people flush with crypto. This is self-explanatory: sell the rich something they want and make them feel important once they own it so they come back for more.
Ownership. There exists a spectrum from innovative ownership over governance (Direct Democracy) to something more traditional such as an on-chain investment syndicate.
Misalignment between the values members hold to define a DAO and what the core team has built will become a source of frustration if members are serious about these values. When considering joining a DAO, first introspect your own why for joining. Knowing what you’re getting yourself into and the circumstances when you should say no will be more important than saying yes and prevent frustration and disillusionment.