The topics discussed of CSR, social entrepreneurship, and ethics can all tie into one common idea, using business for the betterment of others. As the problems of the world become more prevalent, more individuals are pushing businesses to use their power to do something right for the world. To help solve these social or economic issues, some businesses are taking different methods of approach, including having actions to help, doing what is morally correct, or creating a business with these issues as a sole focus. With several speakers today, I was able to obtain a wide perspective of how and why all businesses should adopt CSR and ethics into their existing business model.
One of our speakers today, Dr. Eliada Griffin-EL, who I felt was the most impactful speaker thus far, went into detail about social entrepreneurship. Although not easily defined, many individuals are making strides to solve a large issue by finding the root of the problem and creating a solution. Even though it is incredibly broad, the beauty of social entrepreneurship comes from its simplicity. Social entrepreneurship is about creativity, innovation, and doing something that others may not have had the guts to do. There is no one solution to a problem, or else it would have already been done. Being willing to put in the work of learning, creating, and adapting to the problem at hand is the essence of social entrepreneurship: companies working to make solutions to these issues.
On a less solution focused end comes Corporate Social Responsibility. Rather than devoting a whole company to the solution of a large problem, the idea of CSR is that all businesses should focus on helping their community, if not a 50/50 focus between social and financial goals. What ties in both of these concepts is that both attempt to achieve a goal that will provide betterment for a group. Although social entrepreneurship has more drive behind their impact goals, transforming a business from a financially driven cooperation to a CSR3 is incredibly admirable as well. It’s not easy to ensure that each aspect of a business chain is acting ethically and morally, but some companies make this their focus to ensure fair trade, non-GMO products, mental well-being of their employees, and many others.
Taking a step back from CSRs and social entrepreneurship, we worked with Dr.Jones on a personality test to work on our leadership skills. As a more broad analysis of skills, we were able to get a quick glance at our leadership styles and how they work with others. Although this was my second ranking, I definitely aspire to build more of the “Blue” traits in the future. With my aspirations to work for a non-profit (or social entrepreneurship, after today’s discussion), I can see how traits of relationship building and trust will be helpful to come into play in these fields.
All-in-all, today was a very educational day within a field I am passionate about. It was great to see the future of service in business actually written in a textbook as a serious concept. I’m aware that it is serious within the business world, but where I am from it isn’t often that you hear of any successful non-profits or social entrepreneurship succeeding in the area. As people become more politically, socially, and environmentally conscious as I hope they will, I foresee CSRs becoming the norm within the business field. No interesting company visits or study spots to take pictures of, so featured is a very goofy picture Matthew took of me that I liked (Great view of Cathy!).