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Blog Posts

Aug 17, 2017
A New Way to Connect Your Purchases to Social Impact

Our new website has dozens of new features, including training opportunities and information to connect experts and investors to social enterprises.  One especially valuable new service on our website is the Marketplace.  At the Marketplace you can search for local social enterprises.

Aug 9, 2017
The Center for Social Enterprise Development is now SocialVentures

Starting today and continuing through August 15 we will be rolling out the exciting changes to the Center for Social Enterprise Development. Today you are receiving our first blog under our new name, SocialVentures.  Our new website will go live August 15.  There you will see many valuable new features such as the social […]

Aug 2, 2017
New Fund to Support Social Enterprises

I am thrilled to announce that Social Ventures Fund, LLC had its first close and has come into formation.  It will remain open for new investors for the next 18 months.  This is a great opportunity for individuals, family funds, and companies to extend their philanthropy into their investment portfolio.

Jul 26, 2017
Mobilizing the Community

When this blog launched in 2005, there was a strong need to improve both understanding of and performance by nonprofits to create social impact efficiently and reliably.  Over the years the performance of local nonprofits improved immeasurably, particularly in the cultural sector.  Still, two recessions and a historically slow economic recovery leaves the financial sustainability of the nonprofit sector fragile.

Jul 12, 2017
The Elevator Pitch is More Than You May Think

The elevator pitch is a vivid and transparent way to reveal how well focused is the definition of product and customer. Its value is in revealing to entrepreneurs whether they have done enough work to create a customer / product / attribute / brand focus that warrants the next step of building a business plan.

Jun 21, 2017
Investing for Impact Needs to Mean Something

Impact investing is not a new term, but it has been expropriated by the general investment community as a marketing term that sounds more appealing than ESG and more specific than sustainable investing. This trend is making it more difficult to distinguish investment in companies that are committed to creating social impact, which we call social enterprises.

May 31, 2017
What makes a company good?

I welcome the number of efforts to recognize and encourage companies to do good in the community. Many labels are being created, yet it would be a mistake to make qualifying for a particular label the criterion for being considered a good company.

May 24, 2017
Good Planning Comes From Adequate Capital

Pelotonia’s success is an excellent example of the value of capital to empower good planning and good implementation. The lack of sufficient capital to plan for and absorb surprises is often what gets new social enterprise start-ups into trouble.

May 17, 2017
Open Letter to Aspiring Social Entrepreneurs

Open Letter to Aspiring Social Entrepreneurs: “Let me be the first — and perhaps only — person that recognizes you for your bravery and courage; a sacrifice to align purpose within the motivation for profit.”

Apr 7, 2017
More Innovative Ideas to Create Impact-Then What?

The challenge of a weekend program, however, is what to do next. The unbelievably high energy of a weekend event can lose momentum quickly without some structure and guidance to hold the team and its energy together. Working with GiveBackHack, the Center for Social Enterprise Development is taking a whack at the hack by offering the weekend participants “Next Steps”, an evening of structure.