Is Social Awareness The Business Paradigm of Tomorrow?
Many people hear the expression “Social Entrepreneurship” and think it applies to other kinds of businesses, but not to their business. You may want to reconsider that opinion. Many experts say that in 20 years, for a business to survive it will have to have a social purpose. Is your business prepared for this shift? Imagine there are two car companies both make cars that meet your needs. One of those car companies is committed to a social cause. Which car would you be more inclined to buy? What if the socially conscious car costs more? Your neighborhood has two Dry Cleaners and one of those Dry Cleaners supports local school programs. Which Dry Cleaner would you use? What if the socially conscious cleaner is not as fast as the other location. This can apply to any business in any industry. Is this TRULY the “Business Paradigm of Tomorrow“?
Social Entrepreneurship Doesn’t Come Without Risk
Social entrepreneurship can be risky. Your firm’s stance on a certain social issue can increase your business. However, you may lose customers who feel differently. Losing customers is much harder to forecast than how many you may gain. Any business or owner who decides to use their firm to promote or even oppose a social issue should tread carefully. The business owner needs to consider the pros and cons of their proposed position. However, if you decide to throw caution to the wind and wholeheartedly support or oppose a certain issue, it needs to be done professionally. Customers may respect your position, even if they disagree. The key is to do it in a respectful way to those customers who do disagree with you. It may not be wise to invest too much in your social entrepreneurship.
How Far is Too Far?
A natural extension of this paradigm is that companies with a social purpose may be more attractive to talented people wanting to join the team. A purposeful environment that brings out the best in each and every employee. It is the holy grail for many businesses. It can be a perfect recipe for a thriving, dynamic and highly profitable business. However, if that social purpose is a contentious issue, your employees may revolt. Worse, they may become antagonistic to customers that do not embrace your position.
No matter your occupation or business, I challenge you to think about a social purpose that excites you. If you’re passionate about that purpose, it will be easy to figure out a way to make your social purpose an integral part of your business. Just remember, not everyone will agree with you. Make sure your business is prepared for that outcome as well.
Here at The Beacon Center, giving back is a way of life for us. We support several issues, including Child Hood Hunger, Cancer Research, and Autism Awareness. As a Veteran owned business, we also follow VA and military issues closely. No matter what causes your business is passionate about, we can help with strategy meetings, fundraisers, and other events to help spread your word.