17 Aug 2023
There has been a noticeable shift in recent years towards greater corporate responsibility and sustainability. Every organisation of a certain size has an Environmental, Social and Governance strategy. Social enterprises are leading the way, showcasing how businesses can combine purpose with profit. Social procurement is increasingly important, but that doesn’t mean social enterprisess can’t compete against traditional larger corporations or be deemed as an inferior ‘cheap option.’ That is a fundamental misunderstanding of their value and potential.
While larger corporations often prioritise profitability for their stakeholders, social enterprises have the dual mission of making money while also creating positive change. Societal benefits are a core part of operations and part of a dual purpose route to achieve sustainable growth.
We’re a tiny organisation. Most social enterprises are. But this smaller size allows them to pivot quickly in response to societal needs – and business needs. Social enterprises can often respond to last minute briefs by working with networks, not held back by cumbersome processes.
We know that the way business has always been done isn’t necessarily the way it should always be done in the future. The challenges the world faces today, from climate change to income inequality, require innovative solutions. Social enterprises can take the lead in addressing these challenges, offering a fresh perspective that large corporations can learn from. Great societal entrepreneurs think holistically about societal challenges and craft business models around them, rather than just following the traditional models. Would an ecosystem solely of social enterprises work? We’re not sure. But should they be part of a global economy and respected as much as major players? Yes, absolutely.
Social enterprises are usually made up of passionate people- and as such they do good work. We make films we’re proud of, never scrimping on quality or professionalism. We don’t do it on a shoestring budget, or ever hand over something we don’t love. To think that social procurement should be charitable is entirely missing the point.
Modern employees and consumers are increasingly looking to align with organisations that reflect their values. By not just focusing on the bottom line but also on societal impact, social enterprises have a unique selling proposition that appeals to a growing demographic – and one your clients will probably be interested in.
The world is at a juncture where traditional business models are being re-evaluated. The ‘business as usual’ approach is no longer sustainable, given the global challenges we face. Social enterprises offer a new way of thinking, a model of delivery, and an approach that could shape the future of business, demonstrating how profitability and societal impact can go hand in hand. So don’t look down on us, but recognise our value, potential, and the indispensable role that social enterprises play in the modern business landscape.