Social Entrepreneurship: Future of Business PartnershipsBy Jorge Ramos Zwanziger | Wed, 01/20/2021 - 08:30
The future of entrepreneurship is social. Today, the World Economic Forum (WEF) gave recommendations on how businesses can support and partner with social entrepreneurs. Social entrepreneurship can create lasting and significant social change as it uses real money and technology to make people’s lives better. This type of entrepreneurship aims not to enrich owners or investors, primarily, but to benefit socio-economically deprived communities, explains Entrepreneur. “The fast-paced world in which we live in invites us to be selfish, but social entrepreneurship is just the opposite. It is about generating empathy and resilience toward the problems of others and then being able to say: 'If the problem belongs to someone else, the problem is mine too,’” said Lucía Gómez Arriola, CEO of Pro México Indígena, in an interview with TecReview. Pro México Indígena is an organization with over 20 years of experience in making indigenous communities in Mexico self-sustainable.
WEF explains that social entrepreneurs have the capacity to provide critical services to those who are struggling. Therefore, the Forum says that if businesses partner with and support social entrepreneurs, they could generate a larger positive impact on the lives of nearly 1 billion people around the world. But, why would businesses want to partner with social entrepreneurs? Social Enterprise, a company from the Netherlands that aims to push social entrepreneurship, found three ways in which businesses benefit, economically, through alliances with social entrepreneurs: sustainable business models, a sustainable market supply and building and spreading knowledge about innovations. WEF also states that these partnerships are beneficial because they integrate social practices into business models, allowing companies to identify gaps that can be filled by a social business partner. This is beneficial for businesses as it allows them to generate a long-term, successful and sustainable collaboration. WEF uses IKEA’s Social Entrepreneurship’s mission to describe ways in which businesses can partner with social entrepreneurs, as a way for them to find benefits in doing so.
These partnerships also allow for the creation of value-added services for customers and operations. These do not necessarily have to be on a large-scale but through local collaborations companies can jointly address them. By partnering with social entrepreneurs, businesses can support social innovation and create business solutions while addressing social and environmental challenges. These partnerships provide a way to support social transformation where successful businesses give back and contribute to a more inclusive and equal society, WEF states.