It’s argued that social entrepreneurship is the new business model due to its ability to help one connect with the world and live a purposeful life while serving others. It also improves the image of business through collaborations and fosters relationships for a better society.
We asked entrepreneurs and business owners how they’re incorporating social entrepreneurship and here are the responses.
#1- Being greener
We are beginning to focus on and create initiatives toward being more green. Since my business is a part of the lawn care industry, the way in which we operate can have a massive environmental impact. We have partnerships with a large number of lawn care companies and professionals which we then connect our customers with, and we want to start focusing on partnering with companies/professionals that use more environmentally-friendly tools.
Thanks to Jeremy Yamaguchi, Lawn Love!
#2- Recruiting the unemployed from Africa
As a Canadian immigrant and a small business owner, one of my business' social enterprise initiatives have been to recruit educated unemployed youths in Africa who make up 80% of my content writing team and pay them at North American wage standard; this helps my business to contribute to reducing the problem of mass unemployment & impoverishment rate in Africa.
Thanks to Olu Ojo, Frenz Hub!
#3- Hiring underprivileged people
One way that OhMy dot ca has found to do this is by hiring employees from underprivileged backgrounds. We have created opportunities for those who may not have had access to them otherwise. This includes people who are unemployed without experience or have a criminal record. By hiring employees from underprivileged backgrounds, we have helped them get back on their feet, helped them gain the skills and the experience they need to build a successful career, and gave them the opportunity to start a new life.
Thanks to Marcus Anwar, OhMy.ca!
#4- Safe home security
The reason I decided to start my company was that I realized that there was a need for it. There were so many people being taken advantage of by predatory home security companies, which was causing massive financial repercussions and causing people to be less safe. My company is designed to inform the public and help them make smart, financially acceptable decisions without being taken care of. I work on meeting with people, especially those in vulnerable communities, to help educate them on this topic.
Thanks to Kristen Bolig, Security Nerd!
#5- Contributing to charities
Every year, we decide, as a team, on the charity that we're contributing to for that fiscal year. We all contribute to a fund set up specifically for the charity all year long and present them with the money at the end of the year. By picking a new charity each year, we feel like we're spreading the wealth around more than by just sticking with one charity. Success isn't measured strictly by profits and the bottom line, but also in how much you can give back to those in need.
Thanks to Brian Donovan, Timeshatter!
#6- Adopting pay it forward model
I have extensive experience dealing with nonprofits and small businesses, and we understand the difficulties that come with a limited marketing budget. We adopt this strategy for our initial tier of services because we don't want great ideas and products to go unnoticed simply because of a low budget. Our pay what you can concept lets those who can afford the services help those who can't at the moment. The pay what you can paradigm should flow into a pay it forward model, in our opinion.
Thanks to Amar Vig, London-fs!
#7- Sustainability by reducing waste
My brand is incorporating social entrepreneurship into the business by supporting
initiatives we feel align with our core values. We are currently focusing on sustainable operational practices to reduce the waste produced by the company. For instance, all waste products during production are recycled. The leftover cloth is sent to a paper-making industry that repurposes it into recycled paper. This partnership has helped us minimize our wastage and practice sustainability as well.
Thanks to David Clark, Basement Guides!
#8- By equitable hiring practice
While social entrepreneurship represents a strong example of the power of free-market innovation to deliver real public good to everyone, I think it's important to remember the importance of focusing on one's core competencies. While I do my best to be equitable in my hiring practices and careful about who I do business with, at the end of my day, I'm in the business of connecting people with travel deals and that's what I'm going to focus my efforts on during working hours.
Thanks to David Angotti, Hawaiian Islands!
#9- Giving to non-profits
In 2021, our company joined the 1% for the Planet movement. This means we are giving directly to approved nonprofits in the 1% for the Planet network. We choose associations that make sense with our values and our vision of the world. We’ve chosen the Gates Foundation in the past and will continue to choose organizations that enhance healthcare around the globe, reduce extreme poverty, and give children access to education and technology.
Thanks to Jean Gregoire, Lovebox!
#10- Contributing as a global citizen
Including my social purpose in my brand narrative is my method of incorporating social entrepreneurship into my business. As I establish myself as a social entrepreneur, I weave my efforts into my brand story to inform my customers of my actual actions and values. From this, people know where I stand socially as a company and build trust with my customers, especially after sharing some of my measurable results. I use my website and social media channels as platforms for sharing my contribution as a global citizen. Otherwise, we all make a living, so why not do it in a way that benefits everyone.
Thanks to Stephen Curry, Coco Sign!
#11- Raising environmental awareness
At Hinterland Co, our advocacy for cannabis destigmatization and legalization is inextricable from the larger fight for environmental protection and sustainability. We believe that cannabis has incredible benefits, not only for the human body and mind but for the planet as well. Our educational campaigns don’t just teach people the benefits of cannabis. They are also part of a wider movement to raise awareness about environmental issues to encourage sustainable development.
Thanks to Erin Stone, Hinterland Co!
#12- By coaching youth sports program
A big part of being socially responsible is connecting with your community and giving back in any way you can, large or small. One small way I try to give back to my local community is by coaching youth sports programs, to ensure that the kids in my area grow up with opportunities to learn and grow through sports. Athletic programs help keep kids out of trouble and teach them valuable life lessons along the way.
Thanks to James Green, Build A Head!
#13- Funding technology initiatives
Funding technology initiatives in 3rd world countries are my way of incorporating social entrepreneurship into my business. Technology has a major influence on today's world, and its impact in the future will be even more significant. We intend to equip children from remote areas in these countries with basic technological skills by funding tech initiatives. This funding ensures they are not left behind in an increasingly modernized world. Hence, every year I set aside a percentage of my business's profits for the initiative. We also donate computers to education institutes furthering a similar course.
Thanks to Jonathan Tian, Mobitrix!
#14- Contributing to global education
At CustomersFirst Academy, we commit to contributing 1% of our revenue to global education. The goal of the Pledge 1% movement is to provide inspiration, knowledge, and empowerment for all businesses in order to be a force for good. We are delighted to give back to our communities and incorporate charity into our core beliefs and culture. We believe that education is a human right, and we are committed to donating 1% of our profit to charities that support global education.
Thanks to Viktoriya Maya, Customers First Academy!
#15- Creating awareness about social justice
As an entrepreneur myself, I understand the importance of implementing social entrepreneurship in my business practices. As part of our marketing strategy, we host a number of talks and create videos to educate people. These topics include wage inequality, inclusivity, racial tolerance, etc. We use our social media channels to promote these videos and highlight major social issues persisting in the business world today. Our aim is to educate our followers, customers, and others in the industry about these issues.
Thanks to Ben Wagner, Leave The Key!
#16- Hosting educational seminars
As a business owner, my emphasis is on education and relaying its importance to people associated with the business as customers or staff. To bring about awareness in our audience, we call upon entrepreneurs that have succeeded in their respective careers through education and the passion for learning. We want to inspire people, and if one person can go home with an unmistakable thought of train and the will to learn through
our educational seminars, then we have succeeded. Hosting seminars based on success stories and career counseling is the norm of our company.
Thanks to William Donnelly, Lottie!
#17- Saying ‘NO' to plastic bags
As a retail store owner, I’ve incorporated social entrepreneurship into my business by saying no to plastic bags. Plastic pollution is a severe problem for our planet. Even though they are easy to produce, the damage they cause to the environment cannot be stressed enough. I have switched to paper bags. Not only are they 100% more biodegradable as compared to plastic bags, but they can also be reused and recycled.
Thanks to Elisa Bender, RevenueGeeks!
#18- By afforestation
To integrate social entrepreneurship in our business at Local Furniture Outlet, we first identify any social need that resonates with what we do and our customers. For example, since we produce furniture from wood in our company, we execute an afforestation program where we plant trees to replace felled trees every month. This is vital to limiting environmental degradation that may occur as a result of exposed terrains that are
vulnerable to erosion and flooding. Our practices are also focused on replenishing natural resources that may be limited.
Thanks to Aaron Masterson, Local Furniture Outlet!
#19- Donating books to classrooms
Literacy advocacy seemed like a natural fit for me as a writer. I wanted to donate new books to underserved classrooms around the country, but I couldn't think of a way to fund it. By producing fantasy novels and building a solid young adult brand, I can create cash that can be reinvested in my foundation to provide new books to those in need. I can contribute more books if I sell more books. Finding a sustainable and scalable business strategy to support your cause is one of the most critical aspects of ensuring your project's
Thanks to Vaibhav Kakkar, Digital Web Solutions!
#20- Sharing company's skillsets
Sharing our company's unique skill sets adds value to entrepreneurship. Qualified coworkers may help and collaborate with entrepreneurial activities by using our commercial expertise and complementing the entrepreneurs' social impact talents. Coworkers have a better grasp of social concerns and how to make a beneficial influence on people, the environment, and society. They also learn about social innovation and how to incorporate social impact into their businesses.
Thanks to Dan Barrett, Pacific Precious Metals!
#21- Free access to photography tools
When a lockdown occurred in 2021, people were suddenly trapped in their homes. Some of them needed to renew their expired passports or IDs, and they also needed a new picture, but onsite photo services were closed. Our online photography service provides the perfect solution to this problem: we offered free access to our tool so people could renew passports without going outside. Lately, we have proposed free pictures also for student IDs. Using the advantage of our product is the easiest way to incorporate social enterprise.
Thanks to Tomek Młodzki, Photo AiD!
#22- Supporting kids with education
The pandemic has affected a lot of people. Many students dropped out of school after the nationwide lockdown. Some of these students were from low-income families. To assist those kids, we decided to form a team of employees to assist them with their studies. We currently have 250 students enrolled in this program, taught and trained by our employees. We recently conducted a drive to raise funds so that they can even connect with us digitally.
Thanks to Alex Bryce, WeInvoice!
#23- Helping the community to flourish
I started NetLocal with one goal in mind, and that was to help my local business community to thrive and grow beyond the limitations of geographical location. Our focus has always been local, as I believe that by helping the other members of my community to flourish, we all benefit and the journey to success should be made in the company of as many other people as possible because we’re better together.
Thanks to John Dibella, NetLocal!
#24- By donating excess products
Being an entrepreneur comes with a certain sense of privilege, so supporting local organizations in Charlotte, NC has always been a priority. We support charitable organizations that aid those who don't have a living wage, and always donate our excess products or returns so they don't go to waste. By supporting the local community in which your business is based, you can also develop more brand loyalty, which is crucial for overall longevity. A business that is socially responsible and aware will also attract more employees.
Thanks to Gabriel Dungan, ViscoSoft!
#25- By not using plastic for packaging
Social entrepreneurship has been a growing trend among businesses and its necessary. In my business, I have taken up the environmental concern about growing plastic waste as the issue that I would like to address. While shipping my goods, I don’t use plastic in any form to pack the product. I have replaced the packaging with paper bags or cardboard boxes instead of regular shipping plastic bags. The printed labels are printed on paper stickers. I have replaced the tapes from plastic cello tapes or duct tapes to paper tapes.
Thanks to Nathan Watson, Lion Locs!
#26- Producing eco-friendly products
To incorporate social entrepreneurship into my business, I have started to produce eco-friendly products. I have a clothing brand, and I believe that the fashion industry wastes many resources. As someone who’s part of this industry, I wanted to play my role in reducing my carbon footprint. As a result, we opted for recycled packaging materials. My company has even started to use materials like organic cotton to manufacture our products because it takes up 62% less energy and 82% less water than traditional cotton.
Thanks to Jessica Kats, Soxy!
#27- Environment-friendly designing
Designing is a powerful feature when it comes to branding and business. For incorporating social entrepreneurship, design can be used in various ways. To start with, we can save the environment by thinking clearly about packaging designs. Recently, we have seen a surge in biodegradable and reusable packaging. This is introduced in favor of environmental protection. You can design various such things as business stationery and marketing prints that promote environmental safety.
Thanks to Erin LaCkore, LaCkore Couture!
#28- Sharing business skills and knowledge
Spreading the skills and experiences gathered over years to new and emerging business owners is both fun and pleasure. It’s a lovely experience to discuss the industry with emerging entrepreneurs, and help them with the specific things they are missing out on. I believe the young generation has a lot of potential, but they need to put an increased focus on merging their business benefits with their impact on the people, and society.
Thanks to Brian Burke, Kenna Real Estate!
#29- By being a radical giver
Radical giving is one of the core values of my business. I’m not saying that you should give your products for free, but you should focus on serving your people first, providing them value before you try to sell them anything. That’s why I created online courses
that others pay thousands of dollars for but I’m giving them away for free. But it isn't giving as a tactic but rather giving to the point that the act itself brings you joy. I discovered that the more I give, the more my business grows.
Thanks to Bobby Klinck, Bobby Klinck!
#30- By hiring 50% locals
During the age of technology, it gets increasingly tempting to hire cheaper, more efficient overseas employees. However, we have committed to hiring 50% of our workforce from the locals. This uplifts the regional economy and contributes to technological advancement around us. Although the cost of hiring and training locals is high, we have adopted a long-term goal that envisions a thriving, self-reliant community. And we are determined to stand by it.
Thanks to Charles Cridland, Your Parking Space!