Social entrepreneurship gets thrown around. A lot. Countless are published tips for social entrepreneurs, talks are given about the social good, and I too have had the privilege to write about the incredible social entrepreneurs I have met in my journey to boost entrepreneurship for youth around the world.
It was 2003 when I enrolled into the University of Arizona School of Music when I first began pursuing my career as a musician and artist. This also was a time in where the digital age was on the rise in it's earlier stages, which impacted the music industry at large on a catastrophic financial level.
Taking a sabbatical used to be largely restricted to academics and posh people who had the time and money to take time off in the middle of their career, while the rest of the world had to hold out for 45+ years of work until their retirement allowed them the chance to explore their non-work related passions.
After this intense immersion into the social fabric of our city's deportee community, we have learned that there are many creative ways to approach social issues and that we are ready to take on the new challenges ahead through more economically viable and scalable model of social enterprise in urban farming.
When Gary Barker's design team embarked on redesigning the clothes hanger as an environmentally sustainable product, Barker secretly thought it was the "stupidest idea" ever. That was in 2006; now the resulting Ditto hangers are being embraced by major retailers such as Levi Strauss, REI and the Gap, and Barker's green product design company, Ditto Sustainable Brand Solutions, is flourishing.
Purpose driven profit isn't just about a better future. It is changing lives today. And it's empowering us, as consumers, to be a part of the process -- reducing teen pregnancies, malnutrition, suicide rates, sex trafficking and dozens of other human atrocities by buying things we love, like gourmet chocolate and luxury sheets.
If you missed it, our kickoff Know Your Value event in Philadelphia, PA was a huge success! These women are givers -- and so we're going to give them the opportunity to grow their sense of personal and professional value. I can't wait to see what the next Know Your Value event in Washington, D.C. has in store.
Technology, especially social media, has dramatically changed the way people communicate in recent years, and what I call "digital fluency" has become the business literacy of the 21st century. Digital fluency is the ability to use social and mobile technology to communicate, collaborate and connect with people.