2014: The Year of the Social Entrepreneur20 Mar 2014, Posted by Social Entrepreneurship in
Richard Branson, serial entrepreneur and founder of the Virgin Group, claims on his LinkedIn blog that 2014 will be the year of the entrepreneur. He adds that “the entrepreneurs who will succeed in 2014 will need to focus upon having a purpose beyond profit for their business.” Branson predicts that the most successful entrepreneurs will be those who have set out to be forces for good, in other words, the social entrepreneurs.
Annika Small of The Guardian agrees that “social change is the primary driver for many of the new generation of entrepreneurs.” If their motivation is to do good, their vehicle is digital.
Technology is the most powerful tool entrepreneurs have ever had. Web based platforms are supporting everything from research and communication, to accessing capital by taking advantage of crowd funding.
Access to social entrepreneurship training and education is moving away from institutions, and in to the open, affordable domain of massive open online courses. The advancements in education and technology are levelling the playing field and created opportunities for everyone who wants to become an entrepreneur and change the world.
Technology is shaping a new era of entrepreneurship. According to Small; “Technology is helping every business, large and small to move forwards, which will only increase in the coming year.”
Technology has also allowed collaboration and interaction on a scale never before seen. The social entrepreneurship movement is no longer limited to fragmented organizations learning as they go. Social entrepreneurs are learning from each other’s experiences and sharing knowledge.
New technology puts us at the tipping point of a social entrepreneur led revolution. The tools are in place for entrepreneurs to innovate for social good and create a real impact. They only need to seize the opportunities being created and turn big ideas into reality. As Richard Branson says, “Screw it, just do it!”