This category includes articles about social entrepreneurs, typically about businesses with a for-profit model with a social mission embedded into the fabric of the business.
This category includes articles about social entrepreneurs, typically about businesses with a for-profit model with a social mission embedded into the fabric of the business.
Steve Grizzell, one of the most experienced venture capitalists in Utah is heading to Egypt to help create an ecosystem for entrepreneurship to provide more jobs for young, educated people. He hopes that the model they create in Egypt can be exported to other developing countries.
Steve, who runs InnoVentures Capital, says, “Traditional businesses are not creating enough jobs anywhere in the world. This is particularly true in developing countries with a large population of young educated people. The solution being pushed is entrepreneurship. But entrepreneurship occurs within a much larger system. How do you create the system?”
He says he’s designing a system to fund entrepreneurs. “I’m attempting to create a funding structure from seed to private equity. I am also trying to put in place the components necessary to mentor entrepreneurs to build significant companies.”
Steve, who has lived and worked around the world, makes the case that solving this problem is vital for the future of the world. “Much of the unrest in the world is caused by the lack of opportunity and the subsequent loss of faith that your life will ever get better. Hopelessness leads to revolution which is usually violent like we see in the Middle East today,” he says.
On Thursday, January 7, 2016 at 1:00 Eastern, Steve will join me for a live discussion about his upcoming trip and his mission to develop the systems necessary for entrepreneurs to succeed. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.
More about InnoVentures Capital:
InnoVentures manages funds to provide loans and venture debt. The capital is used for growth by innovative businesses that can’t get loans from conventional sources.
Steve has worked on the issues of creating an entrepreneur focused economy in the United States and internationally in countries including Indonesia, Romania, Morocco, Norway and Trinidad. Steve manages two funds in Utah and has made dozens of investments over the last twenty years. He is leaving for Egypt in January 2016 as a consultant for moving the Egyptian venture industry forward. Steve’s goal is to figure out how to create success in a developing economy.
Steve is a member of the Social Venture Network.
“My story starts with a near drowning when I was 15 years old. This experience clarified in my mind the urgency to make an impact while we can,” begins Tony Loyd, the podcaster who produces “Social Entrepreneur.”
He continues, “As an adult, I was successful by many standards. I was an executive with a handful of Fortune 500 companies. However, at times I was conflicted. Some of the companies that I worked for had a powerful mission, but a toxic work environment. Other companies had a wonderful environment with great camaraderie, but their mission was not producing the kind of world I want to live in. I have been asked by these companies to lobby for causes that went against my values.”
He explains how he made the leap to podcasting, “In late 2013, I had a crisis of conscious. I began to write a series of blog posts called ‘My Jerry Maguire Moment.’ Through writing, I began to clarify my thoughts. It was then that I really understood the power of business to do good in the world. I left my corporate job and began to explore my options. I mentored early stage social entrepreneurs through a program at the University of Minnesota called Acara. I began to write a book. I was interviewing experts for the book and I realized that these interviews would make a good podcast.”
Tony didn’t start out in his career on the top of the pile. He says, “I was born in Arkansas in fairly simple circumstances. In high school I graduated 250th of 259. As a younger man, I drove a truck and worked as a janitor. I did not obtain my college degree until my mid-thirties.”
He went on to have a brilliant career, which he describes in more modest terms, “However, I made some good decisions too. I worked hard, read positive content every day and boldly led teams to create value for some large corporations. I really specialized in leading teams in times of transformation. So, having earned my executive role the hard way, it was difficult to walk away from that life. It was quite the lucrative life. In order to begin again, I had to walk away to nothing. No job. No team. No financial security.”
“I am not alone. Let me explain,” he says. “I honestly believe that there are only two forces in the world: fear and love. At this point in history, technology magnifies whichever of these two forces we choose to focus on. If you want to find examples of fear, you don’t have to look far. Technology delivers reasons to fear to our inbox and our social media streams. Self-serving individuals are finding ways to magnify that fear and to exploit our fear. It seems that fear is growing by the day.”
He acknowledges that there is reason to fear. “Yes, our problems are larger than ever before: climate change, social injustice, shortages of clean water and more. By the time we hit the year 2050, we’re going to have to more than double our global food production. How are we going to do that without destroying the planet?”
On the other hand, he notes, there is reason to choose love. “However, technology also allows us to express love in ways that were never before possible. Breakthrough technologies are making new realities possible. Global communication allows positive ideas to spread quickly around the world. People can find ways to help like never before in history.”
“As for me, I choose love. I believe there is a massive tribe out there who is also choosing love. Because I am interviewing standard bearers of love, people are attracted to the podcast, Social Entrepreneur. I am not alone. It feels to me like there is a great awakening.”
The data seem to suggest that love is the right course. “Several times since we launched, Social Entrepreneur has been #1 in four New & Noteworthy iTunes categories simultaneously. That is not something that I have accomplished. I cannot put myself at the top of these categories. That only happens if people are subscribing, rating and reviewing the podcast. Our audience has grown by an average of 80% per week for every week since we have launched. In the end, love wins,” he concludes.
On Thursday, January 7, 2015 at noon Eastern, Tony will join me here for a live discussion about his journey. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.
More about Social Entrepreneur:
Social Entrepreneur is a podcast for aspiring and early-stage social entrepreneurs, and for those who want to make an impact on the world. Three times per week we interview social entrepreneurs, founders, investors and thought leaders. We hear the stories that led them to becoming change makers. We talk about the grand challenges in the world and the solutions that they are creating. The guests give advice for early stage and aspiring social entrepreneurs. We always end each episode with a call to action. If you’re ready to change the world, join us.
Tony has provided leadership to Fortune 500 and mid-size organizations for over 25 years. He has extensive experience working with senior executive leaders to direct global initiatives that align talent solutions to corporate goals. Through his innovative approaches, he has enabled his clients to achieve significant improvements in processes, productivity, quality, and customer satisfaction while reducing costs and improving bottom line results.
Tony is currently the Host of Social Entrepreneur where he spends his time with changemakers who are making an impact on the world.
Before launching Social Entrepreneur, Tony worked with global brands such as Buffalo Wild Wings, Medtronic, Diversey and John Deere. He has conducted strategic planning, led organizational design, created talent management strategy and conducted high potential development workshops. Tony created the learning strategy and led the start-up and operation of two world-class corporate universities. Tony has directed the development of up to 120,000 personnel in sixty countries. His breakthrough ideas enabled companies to dramatically increase worldwide training participation, while transforming the training organization from a cost center to a revenue neutral operation.
Prior to his work at John Deere, Tony was a Human Performance Improvement consultant, working with customers as varied as the US Department of Energy, AT&T, Alcoa and the State of Colorado.
Yes, this is a shameless plug for my new online course, but don’t stop reading, yet!
Over the past 18 months or so, I have produced five courses for online training company Pluralsight. Today, the site published the most recent of those courses, “How to Add Profit to Your Business by Adding Purpose.”
Over the past few decades, a transition has occurred that has changed the way most people think about social causes and corporate responsibility. The old-school notion that we make money at work and do good on our own time is just that, old school.
The cool kids are all integrating their lives such that their careers, investments, and consumer behaviors all align with their core values. Fewer and fewer people today are willing to go to work all day at a job they merely tolerate so that they can put food on the tables. People want to live on purpose!
Because of that demographic shift, companies can–some would argue must–incorporate purpose into their business strategies in order to reach the right employees and the bulk of customers who are willing to make purchasing decisions based on social causes.
The new course makes the case that companies can clearly add profits by strategically adding purpose to their business and goes on to explain exactly how to go about incorporating a cause into the business model to do so.
The course wraps up with a case study on Estee Lauder’s MAC Cosmetics brand, which thrives because of its decades long role in fighting the AIDS epidemic. Over the years, I’ve covered this story a few times for Forbes.
Now, I’ve compiled all of the corporate social responsibility wisdom I’ve gathered from my 25 year business career and five years of writing about social causes and corporate social responsibility into this new course on Pluralsight. You can take the entire course for free using a trial membership or for no additional charge if you’re already a subscriber.
Pluralsight is recognized as a tech “unicorn,” raising $135 million in their last venture round. It is also a notable example of a purpose-oriented business itself, working to enable learning at radically affordable rates.
Earlier, I posted a ranking of the top five interviews I did during 2015 based on YouTube minutes watched. This, by contrast, is a ranking of the top five most popular interviews based on the number of downloads of the podcast from iTunes, Stitcher and elsewhere using data from my podcast host Podomatic.
There is only one (read on to find out which one) of the top five from YouTube that landed on the top five podcast list. This is an important insight for me because it confirms my theory that while I’m posting the same interviews in both places, there are different audiences for podcasts, which people often consume while doing other things, especially driving and running, than for video content, which people must consume in front of a device.
5. The fifth most popular podcast of 2015 was my interview with Christian Busch of Indiegogo and Jake Kirsch of Shock Top. Originally, I posted this interview to GoodCrowd.info here. We talked about the Shock Top CSR program that incorporates crowdfunding on Indiegogo to fight the effects of drought in California.
4. The fourth most popular podcast of 2015 was my interview with Andrea Sreshta and Anna Stork of Luminaid. Originally, I posted this interview to Forbes here. Luminaid produces solar lights at low prices. The lights are particularly useful in the developing world following a natural disaster; they are also popular with campers. The women pitched successfully on Shark Tank and shared their experience with us.
3. The third most popular podcast of 2015 was my interview with Amanda Mukwashi, the Chief of the Volunteer Knowledge and Innovation Section at United Nations Volunteers. Originally, I posted the interview to Forbes here. Amanda was the chief author of a UN Report on volunteering and activism that documents the tremendous, positive impact of volunteers.
2. The second most popular podcast of 2015 was John Goldstein of Imprint Capital. Originally, I posted the interview to Forbes here. Shortly after the interview, Imprint Capital was acquired by Goldman Sachs for an undisclosed amount.
1. The most popular podcast of 2015 was my interview with Ron Miller of StartEngine and Paul Elio of Elio Motors. Originally, I posted the interview on Forbes here. Elio Motors is working to produce a $6,800 three-wheeled car that gets 83 miles per gallon. We talked about their efforts to raise money with the help of StartEngine. This was the only podcast that also ranked among the top five interviews according to YouTube.
The word “sustainable” has two distinct, though related meanings in the realm of social entrepreneurship and impact investing. First, a business that is environmentally friendly and/or supports a more just society is often said to be sustainable and, second, a business that generates revenue and is financially self-sustaining and therefore not reliant on donations is also said to be sustainable.
While, I suspect, some use the term intentionally to cover both concepts, such use, in my opinion, is so vague as to rob the word of all its meaning.
It appears to me that the word sustainable was first used to apply to a business to convey the idea that the business is not only environmentally sustainable but that it is socially sustainable, that is that it doesn’t exploit employees, customers or other stakeholders, especially any who may be otherwise disadvantaged. For expediency, I’ll use the short-hand environmentally and socially sustainable to describe this use.
Using sustainable to describe a business as being financially self-sustaining on the other hand is a relatively new use and one that is confusing. First, the same group of people—the social good community of nonprofits, social entrepreneurs, impact investors and philanthropists—have been using sustainable (and more commonly sustainability) to describe businesses that are environmentally and socially responsibility.
Additionally, the for-profit world, apart from social entrepreneurs, has never used the term sustainable to describe a for-profit business’s ability to generate the required cash flow to support its operations without outside capital, yet it is exactly that feature of a for-profit business that social entrepreneurs wish to invoke when they use sustainable in this context.
The need for a term to describe a social enterprise as being financially self-sustaining is real, however. In the nonprofit world and among those deeply and primarily committed to a social mission, the idea of making a profit for its own sake is less important and to some repugnant. The appeal of a business model, however, that doesn’t require fundraising by constantly asking for donations—large or small—is huge. So, in an effort to avoid invoking the word profit, especially when trying to describe activities within a nonprofit entity that would make it more financially self-sustaining the word “sustainable” has become a clumsy short-hand.
The overlapping and somewhat incongruent definitions for the single term sustainable robs the word of its meaning in either context. If you simply say to an investor that you are creating a business that is sustainable, it isn’t at all clear what you mean. If the word you choose to use doesn’t convey a clear and definitive meaning in a reasonably complete context we need new words.
Therefore, I would argue for using the term self-sustaining to refer to the idea of being financially self-sustaining as you can reasonably infer from the typical context of the reference what is meant. I would also like to preserve the word sustainable as a reference to environmental and social sustainability.
If we adopt these two phrases as I propose, our ability to communicate these two critical ideas central to the social entrepreneurship movement to one another and to outsiders would be significantly enhanced.
So, what do you think? Does it make sense to socialize this idea a little bit to see if we can develop clearer language within our community?
This post was originally produced for Forbes.
Last month, social enterprise startup Imperative, in partnership with NYU, released a report called the “Workforce Purpose Index” that author and Imperative CEO Aaron Hurst hopes will be a positive disruptive force.
Hurst says, “ It is the first study of purpose in the U.S. workforce and the findings are shifting the way the field is thinking about recruiting, culture and leadership.”
Hurst hopes the report isn’t just filed away, but is used to drive change and improve recruiting. He says, “The goal is to have leaders across sectors understand the science of purpose in the workforce and begin to use it to help boost the performance and well being of their teams. It is the most disruptive and potentially positively game changing research about work in over a decade.”
The introduction to the report begins the the following:
28% of the 150 million-member U.S. workforce defines the role of work in their lives primarily as a source of personal fulfillment and a way to help others. These Purpose-Oriented Workers, roughly 42 million strong, not only seek out purpose in their work, they create it and as a result, outperform the rest of the workforce.”
Those interested in the report can download it by clicking here.
On Wednesday, December 23, 2015 at 2:00 Eastern, Hurst will join me for a live discussion about the report and its implications. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.
More about Imperative:
Imperative is a B Corp empowering Purpose-Oriented Workers and supporting the organizations that embrace them. We believe together they have the power to transform the economy and society. Our Imperative is to double the number of Purpose-Oriented people in the workforce in the next ten years.
Aaron Hurst is a globally recognized entrepreneur who works to create communities that are empowered to realize their potential. He is the CEO of Imperative, a B Corp advocating for Purpose-Oriented Workers and supporting the organizations that embrace them.
Widely known for his thought leadership, he is the author of The Purpose Economy (2014) and a regular advisor and thought partner for many global brands. He has written for or been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg TV, Fast Company and was named a LinkedIn LNKD +0.44% Influencer.
Aaron is the founder and an active advisor to the Taproot Foundation where he was the catalyst and lead architect of the $15 billion pro bono service market. He was the creative force behind the conception of the White House’s Billion + Change campaign.
Aaron is a member of the Nonprofit Times’ Power & Influence Top 50, and has been recognized as a top social entrepreneur by Fast Company, Ashoka, Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, Manhattan Institute and the CommonWealth Club. In 2009, he received the highest honor bestowed on an alumnus of the University of Michigan.
An entrepreneur since 16, Aaron began his career as a social innovator at the University of Michigan, where he designed and led an educational program for local correctional facilities, subsequently becoming the first student to receive the Michigan Campus Compact Award.
Born in Aspen, Aaron has lived in Bisbee, Boulder, Brooklyn, Halifax, Ann Arbor, Prague, Chicago, and San Francisco. He currently resides in Seattle with his wife Kara Hurst (Worldwide Director of Sustainability for Amazon.com), their two children and dog. Purpose Type: Empowerer
This post was originally produced for Forbes.
Omidyar Network, an impact investing pioneer, recently published a new report entitled “Frontier Capital” on impact investing. Given the attention that has been paid to the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, which parallels the structure of the Omidyar Network in some respects–critically allowing for both impact investing and traditional philanthropy–I’ve taken time with Paula Goldman, a report author and Senior Director, Global Lead for Impact Investing at Omidyar Network to get her take on the report.
Goldman makes three key observations about impact investing for 2016:
Let’s take a look at each of these key issues through Goldman’s eyes.
She notes, “Interest in impact investing is at an all-time high with champions including the Pope and Bill Gates. However, to date, the amount of capital being deployed to impact investing is still relatively small – constituting less than 0.1% of total capital markets today. In 2016, we will see interest in impact investing convert into exponentially more action — taking a significant leap forward from an “unorthodox” idea to more mainstream.”
She explains the parallels between the founding of Omidyar Network and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to help make that case that impact assets will grow dramatically.
eBay and Omidyar Network founder Pierre Omidyar recognized early in his journey as a philanthropist that addressing big social challenges would require the use of multiple assets. His experience at eBay was that markets, in particular, are an incredible tool for positive social impact. As a result, in 2004 he created Omidyar Network as both a traditional foundation and an LLC so that he could invest in the right changemaker, regardless of whether it is a for-profit or nonprofit.
The recently announced Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is taking a similar hybrid approach in establishing an LLC that can make for-profit investments in addition to nonprofit grants. I expect others to follow suit in 2016 and beyond.
Goldman looks at the demographics of “NextGens” to drive much of that shift. She notes, “There are incredible demographic shifts underway, including the impending $41T wealth transfer to ‘NextGens.’ We’re also seeing more young investors really drive impact investing. The next generation of investors is more globally aware and connected, viewing investing in a fundamentally different way. 67% of Millennials see investment decisions as a way to express social, political, or environmental values versus only 36% of Baby Boomers – nearly twice as many.”
“For example, Millennial employees at BlackRock BLK -2.80% were a significant influence in the development of the company’s first impact investing fund. Major mainstream investment firms are responding to an increase in demand from Individual and institutional investors alike,” she adds.
Goldman sees emerging markets as a place where impact investing and technology will come together to lead innovation. She explains:
2016 will be the year where entrepreneurs and investors leverage the ubiquity of smartphone technology and demographic shifts to fuel the next wave of innovation and impact in emerging markets. We’ve identified a $3 trillion opportunity just above the base of the pyramid to achieve both financial returns and social impact — what we’ve called “frontier capital,” which is early stage risk capital in emerging markets directed towards businesses that serve those earning between $2 and $8 daily. These people have greater purchasing power and a steadier income than the very bottom of the pyramid, but still benefit greatly from products and services that improve their lives. Companies like Lenddo and MicroEnsure are leveraging technology to create socially impactful businesses that directly serve this population, enabling them to scale more effectively and serve the bottom of the pyramid without subsidy.
On Thursday, December 17, 2015 at noon Eastern, Goldman will join me here for a live discussion about the report and its implications for investing in 2016 and beyond. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.
More about Omidyar Network:
Omidyar Network is a philanthropic investment firm dedicated to harnessing the power of markets to create opportunity for people to improve their lives. Established in 2004 by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar and his wife Pam, the organization invests in and helps scale innovative organizations to catalyze economic and social change. Omidyar Network has committed US$879 million to for-profit companies and nonprofit organizations that foster economic advancement and encourage individual participation across multiple initiatives, including Consumer Internet & Mobile, Education, Financial Inclusion, Governance & Citizen Engagement, and Property Rights. To learn more, visit www.omidyar.com, and follow on Twitter @omidyarnetwork#PositiveReturns.
Paula Goldman is an entrepreneur, anthropologist, and movement strategist. She leads Omidyar Network’s global efforts to accelerate the impact investing industry through a combination of investments, strategic partnerships, and thought leadership. She also acts as an advisor on advocacy and influence efforts across Omidyar Network investment initiatives. Paula has served on a number of industry advisory boards–including PEERS and the Harvard Business Review’s Insight Center on Scaling Social Impact—and is an inaugural Social Impact Fellow at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business. She also serves an advisor to a number of tech start-ups.
Born in Singapore, Paula has lived in eight countries across four continents. Paula came to Omidyar Network with extensive background in frontier markets enterprise, managing businesses ranging from an affordable private school in rural India to a micro-enterprise syndicate in post-war Bosnia. She has led innovations that harness the potential of technology, advocacy, and entertainment. As founder and director of Imagining Ourselves, a project of the International Museum of Women, she led the creation of one of the world’s first online museums, alongside a book, traveling exhibits, and series of global events with more than a million participants. This work was recognized with the 2007 Social Impact Award from the Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology and a 2008 Muse Award from the American Association of Museums.
Paula earned a PhD from Harvard University, where she studied how unorthodox ideas become mainstream. She holds a masters in public affairs from Princeton and a BA with highest honors from UC Berkeley. She has been on faculty at both UC Berkeley and Mills college and contributes as an author to outlets such as the Financial Times, HBR.org, and Huffington Post.
This post was originally produced for Forbes.
Tony Robbins, The New York Times number one bestselling author, is working to feed 100 million meals to America’s hungry this year through a partnership with Feeding America –and they’re almost there. (You can donate here.)
Robbins explains the tragedy of hunger in America, saying, “It’s a tragedy that in the United States, the richest country in the world, 49 million people, including 16 million children, may go to bed unsure if they will have a meal tomorrow. These are some of the hardest working people on the planet, often people that we interact with each day, and are scraping by from paycheck to paycheck, just one unexpected expense away from not being able to put food on the table.”
It struck me as being almost out of character that the author of Awaken the Giant Within, a book that is all about teaching people to take responsibility for themselves to overcome whatever obstacles they may face, would be so engaged in this effort. So, I asked him why. His answer surprised me. This giant of a man, who is the very picture of success, relates to the hungry personally because he was once hungry.
“I know that those are more than startling statistics — those numbers are human beings suffering — and I came from one of those families,” Robbins confessed.
Then he shared the story of one Thanksgiving when he was eleven years old:
For me, money was always out of reach as a child. It was always a source of stress because there was never enough of it. I remember having to knock on the neighbor’s door to ask for food for my brother and sister and me. Then, on Thanksgiving Day when I was 11 years old, something happened that changed my life forever. As usual, there was no food in the house, and my parents were fighting. Then I heard someone knocking at the front door. I opened it a crack and saw a man standing on the steps with grocery bags filled with enough food for a big Thanksgiving dinner. I could hardly believe it. My father always said that nobody gave a damn about anybody. But all of a sudden someone I didn’t know, who wasn’t asking for anything in return, was looking out for us. It made me think, strangers care. And I decided that I was going to find a way, somehow, someday, to give back and pay it forward.
Robbins hasn’t given up on the principles of self-reliance. He notes that personal responsibility is the long-term solution to poverty and hunger.
“There are a variety of factors that play into food insecurity, poverty being one of the main ones. Growing up in a poor household, working my way up from a janitor to where I am now, I’ve always believed that working to improve yourself and your skill sets is a key component to ending hunger long-term with any individual or family,” he says.
In his new book, Money: Master the Game, Robbins credits Jim Rohn for teaching him key principles of success. “I asked Jim years ago, ‘What’s the secret to economic success? The key,’ he said, ‘is to understand how to become more valuable in the marketplace.’”
Robbins says, “[Rohn] looked directly in my eyes and said, ‘All you have to do to earn more money in the same amount of time is simply become more valuable.’”
On Thursday, December 17, 2015 at 11:00 AM Eastern, Robbins will join me for a live discussion about his goal to provide 100 million meals in partnership with Feeding America and about his new book. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.
More about Anthony Robbins:
Anthony Robbins is an entrepreneur, New York Times #1 best-selling author, philanthropist, and performance strategist. A recognized authority on the psychology of leadership, negotiations and organizational turnaround, he has served as an advisor to leaders around the world. Author of five internationally bestselling books, including the recent New York Times #1 best-seller MONEY: MASTER THE GAME, Mr. Robbins has empowered more than 50 million people from 100 countries through his audio, video and life training programs. He created the #1 personal and professional development program of all time, and more than 4 million people have attended his live seminars.
As a successful entrepreneur, he serves as chairman of seven privately held companies ranging from media production and business services to education and hospitality. Additionally, Tony recently partnered with America’s Best 401k, one the most disruptive solutions in the retirement planning space offering plan sponsors and participants freedom from expensive 401k plans and underperforming investment options.
He has been honored by Accenture as one of the “Top 50 Business Intellectuals in the World”; by Harvard Business Press as one of the “Top 200 Business Gurus”; by American Express as one of the “Top Six Business Leaders in the World” to coach its entrepreneurial clients; and Fortune’s recent cover article named him the “CEO Whisperer.”
As a philanthropist, Mr. Robbins has fed more than 42 million people over 37 years and he is working to reach 100 million total through his partnership with Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger relief organization. His nonprofit Anthony Robbins Foundation provides assistance to inner-city youth, senior citizens, and the homeless, and feeds more than three million people in 56 countries every year through its international holiday “Basket Brigade.”
Entrepreneurs and corporations alike spend tremendous time and money to get good publicity. I’ve reached out to Forbes Contributor Cheryl Snapp Conner, who also serves as the CEO and Founder of SnappConner PR, to find out out social entrepreneurs should leverage the publicity they work so hard to get.
Cheryl offers three key tips:
1. Share and extend your great press coverage. This is a big part of the mileage you receive in today’s press environment. Via social media, your own blog, and other re-postings this is easy and fruitful to do.
2. You are the best author of your own story. As opposed to relying on the press to tell your story, you should hone your abilities to also tell and publish your story on your own.
3. Communications is power! Are you “on the record” for the things you actually stand for? Make certain your social media profiles and your website are clear and consistent in telling your vision and mission and inviting others to join in.
On Wednesday, December 9, 2015 at 4:00 Eastern, Cheryl will join me here for a live discussion about public relations for social entrepreneurs. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.
More about SnappConner PR:
Our company is a strategic public relations firm that supports technology, business and lifestyle companies out of Salt Lake City. Additionally, we have developed a program called Content University to help entrepreneurs, executives and individuals to be more successful in telling their stories to the world via blogging and thought leadership publishing.
I am an entrepreneur and communications expert from Salt Lake City and founder of SnappConner PR. I am the author of Beyond PR: Communicate Like A Champ The Digital Age, available on Amazon. I am co-creator of Content University, available at www.ContentUniversity.com. The opinions I express (especially when tongue in cheek) are entirely my own. My newsletter, the Snappington Post, is available from www.SnappConner.com.
One of my role models is a young social entrepreneur, Nidhi Singh, in India who has created a platform not unlike the Your Mark on the World Center to cover corporate social responsibility (CSR), social entrepreneurship, impact investing and philanthropy in India.
Nidhi reached out to me about six months ago to explore a collaboration between the Your Mark on the World Center and her platform, CSRlive.in. We are excited to be doing so, cross sharing content to give her audience direct access to our stories and our audience direct access to hers.
India recently passed a law requiring all corporations to do some CSR. Nidhi explains, “The new mandatory CSR law has opened up a world of possibilities for Corporate India to do good and contribute strategically to equitable, sustainable growth in India. So I would not say this is a problem, rather a tremendous opportunity that has materialized for all CSR & Sustainability professionals to work, collaborate and create real, on-ground impact with some real funds (INR 25,000 Cr/ $4.5 Billion annually) that are now available specifically for this purpose. There are many companies that have been voluntarily executing CSR projects but many more new companies (approximately 16,500) have now come under the ambit of the new CSR law. CSRlive aims to facilitate the process of optimum utilization of this CSR spend.”
Nidhi has ambitious plans for CSRlive. She says, “As an online platform dedicated to briging news, updates, policy changes, and expert opinions in the CSR & Sustianability sector; we promote best practises, thereby inspiring and encouraging more of the best to take a foothold, grow and expand. We facilitate connections between relevant stakeholders – for example – a genuine NGO looking to survive/scale up can present it’s case and funding requirements to a Corporate company looking for an authentic project that is aligned with their CSR policy. If there is a noteworthy activity in the CSR & Sustainability domain, CSRlive will be its voice. Going forward, we also aim to acknowledge best practises through CSRlive Change-Makers Awards.”
Nidhi has an inspiring vision for the future. “We believe in the power of a good story that is well told to engage and inspire people towards greater good! Getting transferred to the CSR division is still considered ‘Corporate suicide’ (though unadmittedly)- and CSRlive is committed to turning this around with its reportage and passion to connect and bring the right people to the right jobs and the right funds to the right organizations and individuals. The success of CSRlive will be in facilitating a change in mindset – which in itself is half the battle won,” she says.
On Wednesday, December 9, 2015 at 11:00 Eastern, Nidhi will join me here for a live discussion about CSRlive and the promise of the new CSR law in India. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.
More about CSRlive.in:
CSRlive is positioned as India’s credible, livewire news platform dedicated to the social sector and CSR practices presenting content that is delivered using innovative social media engagement, cutting edge technology and a sterling team of subject matter Journalists. We intend to create new benchmarks with frontline reportage on CSR, Sustainability, Philanthropy and Corporate Citizenship. We aim to not only inform, but to establish long-term partnerships with different stakeholders, creating a synergy between available resources and needs of communities. Through CSRlive.in, we intend to give voice and strength to every noteworthy activity in this sector, whether undertaken by a small gram Panchayat or a large multinational Company. As a part of our long-term strategy, we will identify, analyze and acknowledge the best practices and the real change-makers in the social sector, through our proprietary Award modules.
Nidhi is a prominent Social Entrepreneur and a well known name in the field of Advisory and Communication in the sustainability space. She is a former Television Journalist and has worked with leading National Channels like Star News and TV Today Network in various capacities widely reporting on lifestyle, fashion and trends. As a successful entrepreneur Nidhi is co-founder of thecsrjournal.in, Indigreen – a fair trade, organic clothing label & The Green People of India (TGPI) – a collective of sustainable enterprises across India. Nidhi is very passionate about Yoga and is a long time practitioner of Kriya Yoga Meditation as taught by Paramahansa Yogananda (Autobiography of a Yogi).