Who Is A Social Entrepreneur?
Social entrepreneurs are individuals with innovative solutions to society’s most pressing social problems. They are ambitious and persistent, tackling major social issues and offering new ideas for wide-scale change.
Rather than leaving societal needs to the government or business sectors, social entrepreneurs find what is not working and solve the problem by changing the system, spreading the solution, and persuading entire societies to take new leaps.- Ashoka.org
Social entrepreneurs and changemakers serve as an inspiration to us mortals. And it’s not only about what they have achieved but also about how they have managed to do that. Social entrepreneurs are not constrained by a right or a left ideology. Their only ideology is to make impact creation the final outcome and social innovation the currency of their impact.
3 Common Personality Traits Of Social Entrepreneurs
We talk to many social entrepreneurs at Creatively Unsettled and they never fail to hold us in awe. Based on our observations and interactions with them, we find 3 personality traits which stand out among the string of other awesome qualities that they possess.
Modesty Of Achievement
As Rahul Panicker, Ex-CEO of Embrace Innovations rightly said,
“EVERYBODY ELSE’S COURAGE COMES FROM THE COURAGE OF THE LEADER AND
THE LEADER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE WELLBEING AND COLLECTIVE VISION OF THE GANG.
YOUR TEAM MAKES UP YOUR BRAND”.
A social entrepreneur never hogs the limelight or takes the credit of his achievements all for himself. Their team is their family. He/she is modest and dedicates the success to the entire team. They believe in the ‘gang’. One person that best defines this quality is changemaker Manjit Singh,
“PLEASE DON’T CALL ME A CHANGEMAKER. I AM JUST A MERE FACILITATOR.
REAL WORK IS BEING DONE BY THE COMMUNITY”.
Great Team Building Skills
Changemakers have an innate quality of bringing like-minded people together. They are able to build high quality teams by motivating each member to work towards a common cause. Like, Servane Mouazan, Founder of Ogunte and pioneer of Tantrum Physics.
“ALL THE PEOPLE WHO WERE ATTENDING OUR NETWORKING EVENTS, PROGRAMS,
CAPACITY BUILDING SESSIONS WERE WOMEN.
I HADN’T DONE ANYTHING ABOUT IT- THERE WERE NO CUPCAKES, SHOULDER PADS OR
SPECIFIC CAMPAIGNS ABOUT IT” – SERVANE MOUAZAN
In our chat with Servane, she talked about how more and more women started participating in her capacity building sessions all across UK, which eventually motivated her to start Ogunte, an incubation enterprise for women entrepreneurs.
Healthy Disregard for Indulgence in Personal Life
One would rarely find social entrepreneurs splurging money in their personal lives. On most occasions they are fully absorbed by their work, and consider their task so overwhelming that they can hardly spend time on lavish leisure. Ulrike Reinhardt is a socio-economic changemaker who has built the largest skateboarding park in India and has created change in the rural pockets of Panna through her social enterprise – Janwaar Castle. In spite of garnering name and fame all her life, Ulrike is a grounded and a fun person which was evident throughout her conversation with us.
“MY WORK, MY PRIVATE LIFE IS ALL ONE. IT IS ALL ABOUT THE PROJECTS I AM WORKING
ON AND THE COUNTRY I AM IN.” – ULRIKE REINHARDT
Social Entrepreneurs have a multitude of qualities like passion for change and dogged determination to take risks, but it is what they are as a person, that shapes the culture of their organization and sets an example for other people. As celebrated author, David Bornstein rightly said in his book, How to Change the World,
“SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURS CROSS DISCIPLINARY BOUNDARIES, PULLING
TOGETHER PEOPLE FROM DIFFERENT SPHERES, WITH DIFFERENT KINDS OF EXPERIENCE AND EXPERTISE,
WHO CAN BUILD WORKABLE SOLUTIONS THAT ARE QUALITATIVELY NEW.”