In October, I attended a conference titled Beyond Business as Usual, sponsored by reSET, a Connecticut based Social Enterprise Trust. I was curious to learn more about the emerging business model of social enterprise and how it is being implemented in Connecticut and elsewhere in the U.S. As defined on the reSET website, Social Enterprise is a new business model that puts people and purpose before profit and uses the free market to create positive social change.
The conference speakers and exhibitors represented a variety of social enterprises, including a well established technology service company, an educational improv group, a restaurant, coffee house, toy maker, and others. Taking off on the popular “Going Green” catchphrase, I learned that “Going Good” suggests moving directionally towards the principles of social enterprise. Just as “Going Green” can start by recycling paper and plastic or no long using plastic water bottles, “Going Good” can start with some simple steps with the goal of having a net positive social impact, particularly in the local community.
Inspired by what I learned, I have set “Going Good” as one of my 2012 intentions. My first step in this direction is offering 10 hours of pro-bono leadership coaching to a C-level executive of a non-profit organization in the greater Hartford area. I’m not quite sure yet how else “Going Good” is going to play out for me in my executive coaching practice. I am beginning to explore a number of ideas, and would appreciate your ideas and suggestions as well.