Creating Social Value Through Entrepreneurship

It’s no secret that entrepreneurs are driven individuals. Conceiving and building a viable business—then managing and growing that business—requires no small amount of work! But an entrepreneur’s drive isn’t a trait solely focused on commerce. In fact, an emphasis on creating social value is a commonly-shared trait among many enterprising entrepreneurs.

The enthusiasm that’s channeled into building a business is a feeling that many entrepreneurs thrive on. It doesn’t take long for them to realize the opportunity for betterment within their communities and the world around them—a chance to experience this feeling again and again with each new mode of social improvement.

As a result, it’s not uncommon for entrepreneurs to become fixtures and focal points within the framework of their local communities. Examples commonly include:

  • Sitting members on local councils;
  • Active voices within the local Chamber of Commerce;
  • Contributors to local charities;
  • Mentors through educational and social programs;
  • Members of local government.

When we consider that owning and operating a business is a full-time job, these extracurriculars quickly become recognized as a step above and beyond what’s generally expected of a community steward. It’s evident that many entrepreneurs don’t just feel the need to give back or ‘do good’—rather, they see themselves as a force for positive change and social uplifting.

A drive to change the world

Entrepreneurs often seek to drive positive change in the world around them because they recognize their potential for meaningful impact. These individuals have often cultivated a respected network within the communities they serve, are well-regarded by their peers, have access to resources (and capital) needed to power change and, almost invariably, recognize the need for change in a broad way.

Many times, the decision to try and affect social change is spurred by the same realizations that led an entrepreneur to start their business. They see a need, understand the dynamic required to fill that need and believe in their own abilities to connect the dots along the way. For many entrepreneurs, tackling social change is very much akin to starting a business—and many times, the two go hand-in-hand.

Traits that empower social value

Social value is the result of positive social change, where change is the cause and value is the effect. In order to create the effect, the cause must be triggered. Entrepreneurs often see this simple equation, with themselves as the catalyst. They understand how to leverage their own traits for the betterment of those around them.

The traits that empower social value are a rare collection to find in any one person, which is what makes entrepreneurs so aptly qualified to be the drivers of social betterment and the bringers of social value. When you consider the headwinds that stand in the face of large-scale social change, they’re very much the same traits required to start a successful business:

  • Motivation;
  • Perseverance;
  • Logical thinking;
  • Articulation and communication;
  • Passion;
  • Adaptability;
  • Self-confidence.

These traits have the power to drive innovation if channeled in the right way. Entrepreneurs are often well-equipped to harness these natural traits in order to create social value.

Leaving a meaningful legacy

Driving social changes and imparting social value on the world around them isn’t an entirely altruistic habit of entrepreneurs. While many don’t want anything tangible in return, they do thrive on the recognition. Just like their business will hopefully survive them, most entrepreneurs hope to also leave behind a legacy that casts them in a positive light. It’s yet another strategy that’s widely proven: history looks favorably back on individuals who create social value.

Content was prepared by an independent journalist under the direction of Molly Grubb AIF®, CBEC®. Information presented is believed to be factual and up-to-date, but we do not guarantee its accuracy, and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of any subjects discussed. A professional advisor should be consulted before any investment decisions are made. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the author on the date of post and are subject to change.

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