When are business ideas good ideas?

In the past month, I’ve had several conversations with non-profit organizations and social enterprises about when a business opportunity is a good opportunity.

This got me thinking more explicitly about this topic. I also debated it with my colleagues.

We concluded that while there is definitely a need for these organizations to explore opportunities to generate revenue, too many organizations are rushing blindly forward without proper consideration or due-diligence.

This short presentation captures my ideas on the subject. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Enterprise and supplier development (SED) for non-profits and social enterprises

I frequently have conversations with non-profit organizations and social enterprises that are working to establish and strengthen small businesses.

We often discuss how these organizations can enter into a commercial relationship with larger businesses (“corporates”) to speed up their Enterprise & Supplier Development (ESD) efforts.

This short presentation explores three opportunities for collaboration and provides some useful background information. There are others opportunities (e.g. establishing an investment fund, or providing consulting services), but these are more specialized and less common, and therefore not discussed.

These opportunities are created by South African legislation, specifically the Amended B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice.

Setting up a hybrid social enterprise with a mix of legal forms

An increasing number of social enterprises are choosing to use a hybrid of legal forms. We see businesses wanting to register non-profit organizations, and non-profit organizations wanting to setup businesses. Social enterprises with hybrid models are incredibly fashionable. It can even be argued that they have become the norm.

However, there is a very poor understanding of the legal, tax and other implications of establishing a hybrid social enterprise. Furthermore, the majority of social enterprises seem to be choosing hybrid models when they don’t need to, and in the process are creating complicated bureaucratic and ethical problems for themselves.

This e-book was released in September 2014, and has since been presented to multiple audiences such as the NPO Collaboration Dialogue and Community Chest.

Think like a social enterprise – the ebook

I’ve discovered that social enterprise is both a business model and a paradigm or way of thinking. While the social enterprise business model is only suitable for some organizations, I believe that almost all organizations with a social agenda can benefit from embracing the mind-set of a social enterprise.

This e-book from June 2014 describes each of the 10 principles that underpin the way that social enterprises think. This is relevant to all types of organizations.

In pursuit of strategic clarity

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