02 August 2009

Welcome Aboard the Fair Ship Social Enterprise

Here is your ticket to go boldly in the name of fairness. Please mind your head when embarking and disembarking.

You are entitled to the full freedom of the ship though you are reminded not to stray too far to the left or right as you may fall overboard.

Your ticket entitles you to take a very special excursion where you might guide your very own ship, or at least a rented rowing boat. The price on your ticket will indicate which of these is within your financial means.

I hope you will enjoy the trip...

Setting off on your way

What does social enterprise mean to you? Today, I hope to develop this blog post in my few spare moments so that you may gain some understanding of what it means to me.

Social enterprise is all about meeting needs fairly, in a mutually beneficial manner. The main barriers to success as a social entrepreneur are not lack of funds but lack of knowledge and lack of social fairness. Social unfairness, at least in its public form, is also known as corruption.

Social enterprises can be run as simple one-person operations or as larger, co-ordinated concerns.  

How prevalent is social enterprise where you live? What are the barriers to its further implementation? Do you believe the needs of both the customer and the business person are worthy of consideration?

Fair (Fare) negotiations

I took a beautiful rickshaw journey with the assistance of a business person who took me around the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary in India in 1985. The business person, who might also have been described as the cyclist or rickshaw driver, depending on your point of view, required that I negotiated the fare to reach a mutual agreement.

I was prepared to decide what the journey was worth to me with a courteous person who had a knowledge of birds and spoke good English. The business person was prepared to accept my ability to pay what he perceived as a fair price.

I did not see many birds but it was lovely to be out in the Indian countryside away from motorized transport, for the price of a few rupees.

The bird sanctuary is now called the Keoladeo National Park. You might like to visit a Wikipedia page about it here.

I see social enterprise as being an appropriate way to achieve affluence, without oppression.

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