Sharpen your social business idea!
this tool will help you to sharpen your social business idea and understand what is still missing. Think about a working title for your social Enterprise and then think about and answer briefly to the following questions - you’ll be able to print your results at the end!
GOOD IDEA!Download your plan
Pay attention! We do not save your answers in our database. We care about your privacy!
10 RULES FOR YOUR COMPANY
Here below ten rules for empowering your social enterprise (SE). These rules consist of evidence and considerations emerging from the collection and analysis of case studies which took place in Work Package 2 of the FabMove project.
Rule 1: Learn from stories
“Once upon a time, in a far and distant land…”: always learn from stories near and far, your own and other people’s. Stories, cases, lives, mistakes shape a learner’s mind.
Rule 2: Respect zones
“Let it be... and make it better”: policy makers, entrepreneurs, consultants, scholars should be encouraged to think of how to work towards favourable contexts, how to create “respect zones” in their environments that support ideas even when they seem to fail at the start.
Rule 3: Look at the context
“Context matters”: compared to much training material, our tool should pay enormous attention and advise enormous care in considering contexts before proposing solutions. Also, established SE’s may look further into strengthening their network, reaching out for partnerships and opportunities for debate.
Rule 4: Be tailored to specific needs
“A’ la carte and on the move!”: don’t take structures for granted: they may need to be tailored to specific needs, and adapted over time if they fail to keep up with changing needs - yours, of course, and those of the people you wish to help.
Rule 5: Think beyond labels
“Keep calm and transcend labels”: a lot of work will go into choosing the legal framework and structure to operate depending on the legal context; cooperative, association, limited company, social enterprise where this label exists…A SE is more defined by its actual aim to produce sustainable social impact rather than by its legal status. Get help, choose, maybe change over time, but don’t expect to provide or be provided with a ready-made solution. Especially the right solution for all (national/local) contexts does not exist.
Rule 6: Combine high motivation with sound management
“It’s not (just) about your best motivation or excellent training, it’s about the team”: in the beginning there may have been an “epic” phase based on leadership and social motivation, or there may have been careful business planning; but in the long run, both must be present and represented in the core team of the SE.
Rule 7: Find your own way
“Learn to learn”: legislation, funding opportunities, networks change over space and time; use of online and offline resources to search for opportunities and innovation is vital, as is the ability to intercept and understand such resources. The teaching tool might include reference to resources of this nature. Each territory is nowadays populated by hubs, incubators, accelerators, service providers who could fulfil gaps and increase accessibility to several kind of opportunities, including access to finance and networking.
Rule 8: Establish bridges
“Get out of the ghetto!”: learning and collaboration may well come from non-social entities in each market. Explore out of prejudices materials, resources, networks that connect SE’s with their industry, not just with third-sector or social enterprises. This recommendation includes the necessity for SEs to “speak out” into the public arena. Each SE develops specific knowledge and valuable experience that ends to have a public role and a voice in front of institutions and local authorities.
Rule 9: Go hybrid!
“Go hybrid!” (a.k.a.: “Business as un-usual!”): values, value, socio-political motivation, business orientation are all parts of the social enterprise mix - so why not try to build original, hybrid organisations that reflect this complexity? Map out clients, users, beneficiaries, volunteers, employees, suppliers... and find organisational structures and strategies that cater for everyone’s needs and for everyone’s values and motivations.
Rule 10: Become accountable
“Talk the walk”: we should always do what we say, but why not say what we do? We may assume we are doing good, or perceive it from a number of details in our everyday-life, but can we expect others to do the same? Becoming accountable is crucial. The teaching tool should convey the vital importance for each SE and for the world of social entrepreneurship in general of accurate and documented assessment and reporting of results and impacts. At the very least, reflective analysis on possible unintended consequences, or factors of ineffectiveness, should be high on the agenda.