What makes a social enterprise worthwhile?
Promoting a higher level of understanding of sustainable business and social enterprise has always been an urgent need that we see in Hong Kong. At SIFE (Students In Free Enterprises) Hong Kong Recruitment Day, Yuxin Hou on behalf of GIFT addressed an audience that has a passion in social enterprises the key to running successful social businesses.
SIFE is an international organization that mobilizes university students to achieve sustainability through business means. Leveraging his experiences with GIFT and the YLP, Yuxin spoke from a social entrepreneur and social investor’s view, addressed the audience what makes a social enterprise worth running and worth invest in; as he put it in the SSS model: Social Impact, Sustainability, Scalability. Pointing out that at the end of day, it’s the sustainability and scalability that empowers the organisation and its entrepreneur to achieve a bigger and higher level of social impact, Yuxin used recent YLP projects as case studies to explain to the audience the key success factors of running a social enterprise that are most critical and need to be paid most attention to.
When asked to compare between valuable social business model and not-so-valuable social business model, Yuxin put forth that normal social enterprise simply try to help people, while the outstanding ones build models. If a social business goes for years down the line and is still helping the same group of people, its model cannot be qualified for generating an effective social impact. An effective model of true empowerment should enable the beneficiaries to be eventually independent and free the hands of the entrepreneurs to help more people. Yuxin encouraged the audience to choreograph the business plan strategically, and carefully translate the ideas into action.
It is GIFT’s vision to advance the understanding of social enterprise in a globalized context and to tackle the critical leadership needs of future decision makers in an ever-complex business environment. Our team at GIFT is dedicated to encourage more youth to take on the leadership role to pursue greater impact through social business.