What is a Social Entrepreneur?

The terms social entrepreneur and social entrepreneurship were used first in the literature to social change in the 1960s and 1970s. The terms became more popular in the 1980s and 1990s, promoted by Bill Drayton, the founder of Ashoka, and others such as Charles Leadbeater.

What is a social entrepreneur?

Before the term gained traction, those who fit this description were outsiders or radicals that seemed to bring positive change to deprived communities single-handedly. Characterized as extremely optimistic visionaries who had infinite willpower, they use entrepreneurial skills and innovation to address significant social and/or environmental problems. Profit did not motivate this free-thinking and inspirational group. Years ago they didn’t have a name but today we call them, Social Entrepreneurs.

Similar to the way business entrepreneurs change the face of business, social entrepreneurs act as the change agents for society, seizing opportunities others miss to improve systems, invent new approaches, and create solutions to change the world around us for the better. 

We support all efforts to use business as a tool for positive impact. Some groups, such as the Skoll Foundation, define social entrepreneurship more specifically as changing the equilibrium of an established system.

We use the term “Change Creator” and define it as: A person who uses entrepreneurial skills and innovation to improve the wellbeing of people, animals, and/or the environment. They use business and organizations as a tool for change and have a vision to benefit the planet as a whole. 

A social entrepreneur or “Change Creator”, can operate a nonprofit organization or a for-profit business. Each can serve a purpose for the greater good making real change in the world.

Business with a Purpose.

We call this, business with purpose.

There are many amazing people around the world doing great things as social entrepreneurs.  

Here are a few well-known social entrepreneurs.

  1. Muhammad Yunus

Muhammad started Grameen Bank in Bangladesh in 1976. Yunus was teaching economics when a terrible famine hit the region, leaving people starving to death in the streets. His solution was to provide collateral-free micro-loans to the very poorest people in the area, allowing the poor to fund their small businesses and stop the cycle of poverty. The result has been nothing short of incredible: with $4.7 billion provided to 4.4 million families in Bangladesh, Yunus has kept millions of people out of poverty. Today more than 250 other institutions follow the same micro-lending model.

2. Daniel Ben-Horin, Founder of Techsoup Global

Daniel was elected as a Senior Fellow for his work as a leading social entrepreneur by Ashoka. The Nonprofit Technology Enterprise Network awarded him its Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Nonprofit Times included him on its annual list of “50 Most Influential People in the Nonprofit Sector” In 1987 he founded an organization under the name CompuMentor which evolved into Techsoup and Techsoup Global as the internet started to become a vital tool for nonprofits to change the game. Their mission is to connect nonprofits with the technology they need to progress in their causes. Today, they have over 200 employees, an annual budget of $30MM+, and are in over 235 countries/territories. Their network has now reached 690,000 organizations and delivered over US$5 billion in technology tools and philanthropic services.

3. Dale Partridge, Founder of Sevenly

Dale is a social entrepreneur on a mission to inspire more generosity in the world. Sevenly sells apparel that provides $7 from each purchase to charity. Each week they work with a new charity. They have raised over $4.4 million and helped save or improve many lives.

4. Scott Harrison, Founder of charity: water

Scott went from a being well-established club promoter to a volunteer around the world and had experiences that completely changed his perspective. He was impacted by his experiences so deeply that today he has now helped millions of people gain access to clean water and continues to do so. To date, charity: water people like you have funded 17,370 water projects in 24 countries!

5. Susan B. Anthony, Social Reformer

Susan B. Anthony is a historical figure who was a leading social entrepreneur.  She fought for women’s rights in the United States, including the right to control property and helped spearhead the adoption of the 19th Amendment.

Interested in Becoming a Social Entrepreneur? Well, you’re in the right place. Our goal is to give you the tools, and insights necessary to invigorate that drive to be a social entrepreneur.

If you have a way to solve a social problem, you can start your social enterprise now. Starting a social enterprise will vary in complexity depending on the task at hand, non-profit or for-profit status, and funding. Seek the guidance of friends, business professionals, and fellow social entrepreneurs, and you could be on your way to changing the world in no time.

The potential for growth is huge. The internet is opening up new avenues for social collaboration. Social entrepreneurship will continue to come from many more sources. It needs to become a mass activity, not just the domain of inspirational mavericks.

Are you the next Change Creator?

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When a Startup Benefits from a Virtual Assistant

The typical startup must conserve financial resources. In other words, an entrepreneur launching a new business venture does not usually have money to recklessly toss about. This means you have to use your time wisely!

At times, the need to spend money prudently seems to conflict with the necessity of building a team of competent people necessary to launch or get a startup to a new operational level. One alternative available to a startup is engaging the services of a virtual assistant to help with an array of activities and tasks. Indeed, there are a variety of benefits realized by a startup that utilizes the professional services of a virtual assistant.

Financial Challenges

Engaging a virtual assistant can provide financial benefits to a startup in a number of different ways. One big one is, cost savings. Accessing a virtual assistant is cheaper than employing a part time assistant, whether as an employee or an onsite independent contractor.

Another financial benefit arises from freeing up more time of the principals of a startup. I know that it can be hard to delegate work and many founders love to do it all themselves, however I promise that will only hurt you. Through utilizing a personal assistant, the principals of a startup are able to spend less time on essential but clerical and similar tasks. The principals are freed up to focus on activities that improve the bottom line.

Inability to Complete Key Tasks

The principals of a startup frequently find themselves unable to complete key strategic tasks that are essential to the direction and progress of the startup. This will dilute your efforts and throw your plans off course. As noted a moment ago, the principals spend inordinate amounts of time dealing with mundane tasks such as researching blogs, prepping social posts or even designing a website. You get the idea. Through the engagement of a virtual assistant, the principals of a startup can keep their focus on the key strategic tasks and activities that are integral to launching a startup or getting the enterprise to whole new level.

More Time Spent Organizing than Executing

On a related note, typically the principals of a startup spend a great deal of time organizing and not enough time executing plans to achieve objectives. One of the key benefits of a virtual assistant is the minimization of the time spent on organizing tasks and activities. Anyone who has started a business knows about this. There is a ton of organization required such as creating content calendar templates. Organization is essential to a strong foundation but a lot can be delegated so you can focus on strategy and big picture.

Outstanding and Overdue Tasks

A common complaint of principals of a startup is that they always seem to be behind in regard to important tasks and assignments. Outstanding and overdue tasks cause the development of a startup to lag. Through the use of a virtual assistant, a startup is better able to reduce the incidence of lag as well as outstanding and overdue tasks.

I think you get the idea. Outline what has to be done and then prioritize your time. From there, you know what you need to focus on and what needs to be delegated for support. Virtual Assistants can do a lot of various tasks. Everything from tech to writing. Maybe you need someone to manage your blog?

There are many services available. For example, here is a popular one you can check out–Virtual Assist USA

Or, you can check out the 2016 Virtual Assistants Review here.

The Social Entrepreneur’s Essential Startup Guide

Starting a business can be scary when you haven’t done it before. Like anything, we all need some guidance from those who have been there already. This is the easiest way to fast track your success. You can learn from other’s success just as easily as you learn from your own failure.

There is so much information out there today about starting a business. Who do you trust and who’s right? Well, diversity is a good thing. There are many ways to do start a business and we all learn differently. In our case, these powerful steps are tried and true. Not only have they been well documented and proven by experts but we have executed them ourselves and stand by them.

In addition, we have interviewed over 40 entrepreneurs now and had the opportunity to chat with them about their own start. Guess what? At least 90% of them have taken these exact steps or something very similar.

What makes the steps in this guide so important? They are the foundation of your business which is intended to be your livelihood. You want a strong foundation so you can endure the test of time but also so that you give yourself direction. You must know what you’re aiming at and why. Would you play darts without a dartboard? Of course not. This is no different.

This guide consists of 50 pages broken down into key sections that you can tackle one at a time at your own pace. It’s a guiding light for you to feel confident you’re doing the right thing and not wasting your time.

Here’s what you’ll learn inside:

  1. How to think about setting up your business and look at the world as endless possibilities. Perspective is half the battle.
  2. How to understand your audience and what they REALLY want. If you don’t know this you will not get the results you want.
  3. How to find your angle. The internet is full of competition but if you have the right angle you can rise above the clutter.
  4. How to identify a brand name that makes sense and actually has a domain available. Avoid pitfalls that can set you up for failure from the start.
  5. How to incorporate your business or organization. Get the guidance and tools you need to get set up and make your idea official without spending a fortune.
  6. How to build your business model and position brand. This is essential and we walk you through the latest strategy that experts use. This will help guide you and your team towards the right goals so you don’t waste time and energy.
  7. What tools will help you along the way so you can be organized, efficient, and professional?

Build a business you’re excited to wake up each day and tackle. You will improve your chance of success and get their faster. In the end, you will save time, money and pursue a lifestyle that earns a living but also positively impacts the world.

This is designed to help you succeed, it’s free, and we stand by everything we share in this guide.

We hope this helps you, that is the goal here!

Good luck.