Q: Is there a difference between a social entrepreneur and an entrepreneur?

Posted by on Jun 20, 2016 in Corporate Citizenship, from Q to A, Great Companies | Comments Off on Q: Is there a difference between a social entrepreneur and an entrepreneur?

Q: Is there a difference between a social entrepreneur and an entrepreneur?

A: Does there need to be?

Nonprofit organizations working strategically, collaborating with corporations and communities for greater impact. Are they social entrepreneurs?

Companies pursuing innovative solutions to social problems. Are they social entrepreneurs?

Both are mission-driven. Both have a strategy and a culture which includes creating and sustaining social value. Whether coming from the nonprofit or business world, they draw upon entrepreneurial thinking to achieve their goals.

Take for example these two organizations:

  • Little Man Ice Cream is a local company fighting hunger, not to mention the common sweet tooth, one scoop at a time. Their Scoop for Scoop program has been an integral part of their business model from day one. Today they are known for having local and global impact not to mention a very successful enterprise.
  • eGo CarShare is a nonprofit organization providing an innovative solution to environmental and social problems. They compete on the big stage with major, well-funded, highly visible car sharing brands in order to do so. By offering a car sharing option like the others, but one bundled with personalized transportation coaching, they provide a total solution, truly making it possible for their members to reduce or eliminate their dependence on car ownership.

Both organizations are entrepreneurs, but more importantly, both are social entrepreneurs. I look forward to the day when these terms are synonymous. Period.

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