Social Entrepreneurship and Social Enterprise

The Equity | Impact Center is an organization that battles social inequity in institutions involving people’s backgrounds and identities. The organization provides programs and tools to aid companies with capacity-building skills, organizational development, and leadership development in order to further social justice objectives. The Equity | Impact Center is an example of social entrepreneurship because it has a defined business plan, helps to internally organize and develop companies through consulting, and has an objective social mission, to increase social equity in its client companies. One advantage of The Equity | Impact Center is how its business plan and social mission can be accomplished with the same project. In other words, the venture doesn’t use its proceeds from consulting to accomplish its social mission, it accomplishes its social mission through consulting.

Warby Parker is a retail company that sells a variety of prescription glasses and sunglasses as well as contact lenses. With over 161 stores and new innovative AR technology, Warby Parker is a company with exponential success. Warby Parker’s social mission includes providing people with the means to see clearly regardless of their economic status or accessibility. With the help of Vision Spring and government agencies, Warby Parker aims to provide individuals in need with access to cheap or free prescription glasses. A major way the company follows through with its social mission is through its Buy a Pair, Give a Pair Program which has led to the distribution of more than 250,000 glasses globally to those in need. The model of the program includes empowering individuals to administer basic eye exams and sell glasses at low prices, along with donating glasses to those in need through their partnerships. The company also supports research on the disadvantages of not having access to vision care, such as how it harms working and learning abilities, to publicize the topic. One advantage of Warby Parker is their business plan revolving around satisfaction. Warby Parker’s business plan largely involves pleasing its stakeholders. Warby Parker provides high-quality glasses for a comparatively low price, maintains its promises to investors, and enforces an integrity-based Code of Ethics to support its employees. This leads many customers and investors to continue to interact with the company, including myself. The original disadvantage of the company was that it planned to be a mainly online company. The issue with Warby Parker’s original plan is that many individuals with poor eyesight see eye doctors and buy glasses from said eye doctors. Without a physical presence, Warby Parker was competing with people’s tendency to go to one place for eye care and products. However, Warby Parker adapted to the eyewear industry and created a new business plan that involved a larger physical presence that allows people to solely rely on the company for eyewear, excluding medical checkups, since it offers contact lenses and eye examination.

Based on my aspirations to be successful in international business throughout my career, I believe that being involved in social enterprises will be efficient and fitting. I hope to work in a company with an international foothold that has an impactful social mission as well as a revenue-generating business plan.