Five Tips On Starting Your Own Venture That Uses Business As A Force For Good
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For The Venture's global report, Redefining Success in a Changing World, we surveyed more than 550 social entrepreneurs from around the world and talked to some of the most successful to get their personal learnings and tips to help you get your business off the ground.
1. Look for inspiration within your community.
Your business idea stands a better chance at succeeding if it aims to solve a problem faced by your community.
2. Think bold and don’t be afraid to risk failure.
Pablo Gonzales of Café Punta del Cielo stands by the fact there’s nothing wrong with failure, “Failure is the thing that gives you experience. Failure is the thing that makes you have knowledge of what you are doing.” Most new ideas have never been attempted before and so fear of failure is a good proxy that you’re onto something innovative. Setbacks will also help you improve your business model and build your resilience as an entrepreneur.
3. It’s not all about ideas; it’s about execution and team.
Great investors and entrepreneurs alike regularly share that a great team can make a B+ idea an A+ one by executing with skill. Great ideas are plentiful. Great teams with perseverance and skills to execute are rare. Focus your energy on building execution capacity within your team and venture.
4. Money follows value and impact.
Investing your own money to make something you believe in come to life is something all entrepreneurs have to do at some stage. By focusing your energy on generating a measurable, sustainable and positive social outcome through your business model, instead of a quick financial return, you’re more likely to build a business that grows and generates income and impact over a longer period of time.
5. Above all else, persevere and be patient.
No matter how hard it gets, don’t quit. It will take some time but it will be worth it in the end. Speaking to the time scales necessary to bring about change and being confident in the future actions of other pioneers, Paul Rice, President and CEO of Fair Trade USA puts it into perspective, “If you think about how many decades it took from traditional capitalism to what we now know as globalisation or global capitalism, I think it inevitably leads you to realise that these profound shifts in society and economy take many years to fully take place."
The Venture is a new global social enterprise initiative searching for extraordinary startups and new ideas that use business to create positive change. If you have a GCC-based social enterprise or an idea for a social enterprise, enter The Venture #WinTheRightWay to potentially win your share of US$1 million.