Intersection of Business and Social Good: The Power of Social Impact Entrepreneurship
By: Rejith P R, Correspondent, Asia Business Outlook Team
Looking at the Asia business landscape, social impact entrepreneurship commenced significantly focusing on the social and environmental objectives during the core business operations. This methodology aids the existing players or startups to form profit-driven organizations while addressing societal concerns and helping them propel. Blending business savviness with social responsibility helps build economic value and positively impacts the challenging business environment. This approach will also open the way for potential investors to attract consumers and innovation. The social impact entrepreneurs can leverage their firms to solve almost all the pressing social issues, enabling a more sustainable and equitable future.
Dr. Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Laureate and founder of Grameen Bank said "Social impact entrepreneurship harnesses the power of business to solve pressing societal problems." The statement signifies that the organization should consider social concerns as well while performing business.
The Evolution of Social Impact Business
It's crystal clear that business exists for profit making. However, the firms should initiate social goals that can impact society in some ways, which indirectly helps their brand value and be a prominent player in the market. The traditional business model was more concentrated on profit motive than social responsibilities and has been critiqued in this regard. The mindsets have changed, and the business environment has been evolving. A new sort of business entrepreneur has emerged, intending to create an impact in this challenging environment having social concerns by delivering sustainable businesses.
This trending social impact business could use the tools and principles of entrepreneurship to meet the economic and social challenges and make the world safer. Hence, considering the societal point of view will enable the firm to survive and be socially impactful.
Effectiveness of Businesses with Purpose
The critical aspect of Social Impact Entrepreneurship is to give more importance to a lucid and compelling purpose. Generally, businesses are meant for profit, but in this context, not only the motive for money but the primary focus is to serve the crucial role that impacts society. The intense focus helps social entrepreneur lure customers, the workforce, and significant investors who may be fascinated by the goal of positive change.
Let us understand in this way: when a product is being sold, the product is donated to a person who is unaffordable to buy; this idea can create a strong feeling in the minds of the consumers and quickly sell heaps of products while making an impact in society and exhibits the power of integrating business with a social objective.
Innovative Solutions to Social Concerns
In this digital era, social entrepreneurs take the initiative to assess the public's concerns and devise an innovative approach with a solution to tackle the problems. Since they leverage their entrepreneurial skills, the process has become easier to build sustainable and creative solutions, which is why they survive in this competitive business landscape. The best example of an Entrepreneur is Elon Musk, the master brain behind Tesla. The person had a clear vision of the transition from fossil fuels to electric vehicles, which prompted an aim to advance the world's transition to a greener economy. Now, they play a crucial role in lowering the greenhouse gas emissions.
Gauging Impact and Sustainability
A clear and concise way of addressing societal concerns is excellent for the industry and society. However, it is necessary to have robust metrics and a dedication to long-term sustainability. Social entrepreneurs do have a clear thought and should also be accountable for their financial performance and driven to their social goals. There may be times when measuring impact may be challenging. Still, mechanisms like the Social Return on Investment and objectives set by the United Nations Sustainable Development offer a structure for assessing the firm's contributions to the public. So, it is high time to utilize these tools to measure the improvements and efforts.
Collaborations and Its Impacts
For social entrepreneurs, entering into a collaboration is the key to success as the economic challenges are complex, and it is imperative to have a collaborative effort to deal with them. They have favorable options for a more significant impact, such as government agencies, non-profit organizations, etc. So, whatever the strategy, it should support the social cause. To exemplify, Unilever's alliance with the World Food Programme paved the way for the "Share a Meal" campaign. With this partnership, they provide a meal to a child for every product sold, significantly contributing to hunger relief efforts.
The business landscape is changing, and the intersection of business and social good contributes effectively to the economy and represents a metamorphic force in this competitive world. This social impact will completely take over the traditional notions of profit as the key motive of business and bring a holistic approach where financial and social goals can be accomplished. When more entrepreneurs take this social step for the sake of the public and their objectives, there will be a solution to all the pressing issues, eventually leading to a purpose-driven economy.