I recently realized the concept has always been a part of me. I did not strive to be one, and had not even put a name to it, it was just who I was. There are many Philantrepreneurs out there, maybe it’s you, and until now recognizing and utilizing it’s strength and value had not hit the mainstream business strategies. It has now arrived. Let’s define what it means generically to give context to what it could mean to you and your business or nonprofit efforts.
First, the root foundation, something as simple as the definitions and interpretation of the two words, Philanthropy and Entrepreneur. Not surprisingly there are several different definitions of Philanthropy and Philanthropist – the noun, and Entrepreneur.
Philanthropy etymologically means “love of humanity”. Merriam-Webster, defines it “as a wealthy person who gives money and time to help make life better for other people”. Interesting, that Merriam-Webster would actually make the distinction of ‘a wealthy’ person as a part of the definition. I will speak to that at another time. Other combinations include:
- a person who seeks to promote the welfare of others
- generous donation of money to good causes
- inclination to increase the well-being of humankind
- love of mankind in general
Looking at the term entrepreneur, in an article by Brett Nelson a regular contributor to Forbes, listed Merriam-Webster’s definition as “one who organizes, manages and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise” and Dictionary.com’s definition as “a person who organizes and manages any enterprise, especially a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk.” The difference is subtle, but fundamentally it’s the word “any.” Dictionary.com has it right: Entrepreneurs, in the purest sense, are those who identify a need, any need, and fill it. It’s a primordial urge, independent of product, service, industry or market. Richard Branson states, being an entrepreneur simply means being someone who wants to make a difference to other people’s lives. Looking at it from that perspective, wouldn’t anyone that starts a nonprofit be an entrepreneur, a Philantrepreneur? My answer is Yes – it only makes sense.
Examining the perspective from the business sector, companies have long recognized the value of aligning with a cause. It became their corporate social responsibility (CRS) level and a component used to increase the company image. However the approach has had to shift dramatically due to concerns with allocation of funds. Corporations, focused on profits had to look at measurable outcomes. So evolved the concept of meaningful marketing. Business with a heart.
Where do we go from here? Become connected! Join the movement that will benefit your bottom line.
The Philantrepreneur resources support a full circle approach which uses strategies and relationships to benefit both nonprofits and entrepreneurs as they work together. To develop win-win relationships that result in community and bottom line impact – social enterprises. This social enterprise approach combines social impact and business practice by contributing a blend of financial and social value. By measuring and valuing the impact created by social enterprise, organizations can demonstrate the impact and importance of shifting business practices. This will become increasingly important as more investors contemplate impact investing and look for investment opportunities that offer a social return.
www.ThePhilantrepreneur.com: Explore the site for resources and access to training, communicating and adding your voice.
The Philantrepreneur Radio Show: 1st and 3rd Wednesday on www.BlogTalkRadio.com/philantrepreneur
The Philantrepreneur Journal: Premier Edition December 15, 2013!! Leading experts from across the country share their insights and strategies to building strong alliances.
For more information contact: Dr. Victoria Boyd, email@example.com