Be Inspired

Let Books Be Your Guide to the World of Social Entrepreneurship

The job of a Social entrepreneur is a tough one. It requires a lot of hard work, patience, persistence and constant motivation. Thus, today’s article is dedicated to all the young aspirants looking for some motivation to help them further their good cause. Below listed are the names of some of the most resourceful books that a budding social entrepreneur can look up to for guidance and inspiration.

1.Muhammad Yunus’ Building Social Business: The New Kind of Capitalism That Serves Humanity’s Most Pressing Needs

Muhammad Yunus is the visionary who pioneered the concept of ‘microcredit’ and founded the Grameen Bank, both of which led him to win the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize. Building Social Business is the third book by Prof. Yunus, following Banker to the Poor and Creating a World Without Poverty. It is dedicated solely towards the concept of social business, its implementation, and its maintenance. Social business is an innovative business model which promotes the idea of doing business in order to address a social problem, and not to maximize profit. This book incorporates case studies, anecdotes, and pearls of wisdom from Prof. Yunus himself. In this book, Prof. Yunus has attempted to show how social business transforms lives, and why social business holds the potential to redeem the failed promise of free-market enterprise.

2. David Borstein’s How to Change the World  

In this book, journalist David Bornstein has chronicled some of the most interesting and fascinating success stories of people around the globe, including the United States, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Hungary, India, and Bangladesh. Here he talks about their feats and attempts to tackle the pressing problems of the world and their persistence to keep going at it until they get the desired results. How to Change the World records that with determination and innovation, even a single person can make a huge difference. Nelson Mandela credited this book by stating: “Wonderfully hopeful and enlightening…. The stories of these social entrepreneurs will inspire and encourage many people who seek to build a better world.”

3. Blake Mycoskie ‘s Start Something that Matters  

This book is basically a testimony of the success story of TOMS by its founder, Blake Mycoskie. TOMS is one of the fastest-growing shoe companies in the world today, and Mycoskie juxtaposes its story along with lessons learned from other such innovative organizations as method, charity: water, FEED Projects, and TerraCycle. Here he elaborates the six traits that “everyone needs to follow to start and sustain something that matters”: find your story; face your fears; be resourceful without resources; keep it simple; build trust, and realize that giving is good business. The vision with which TOMS’ was founded and the impact it has helped to create will definitely enliven individuals who are ready to make a difference in the world.

4. Jason Haber’s The Business of Good  

The Business of Good written by social entrepreneur Jason Haber demonstrates how business is being restructured to change the world for the better. In the book, Haber compiles interviews with innovative figures and game-changing entrepreneurs to highlight the power and potential of social entrepreneurship in the creation of jobs and growth of the economy while simultaneously impacting the world. This book contains the stories of inspiring young individuals set to disrupt the conventional norms in order to establish a fresh order in the world. The Business of Good indeed brings a much-needed novel look at social entrepreneurship and is a must-read book for business executives, nonprofit organizations, and young aspirants.

 5. Jacqueline Novogratz ‘s The Blue Sweater  

The Blue Sweater is the inspiring personal memoir of the Founder and CEO of Acumen, Jacqueline Novogratz. She is a woman who has spent her life in the quest to understand global poverty and to find powerfully innovative ways of tackling it. Through her autobiography, she demonstrates how an “ordinary” person like her can accomplish the “extraordinary” through sheer courage, fortitude, resilience, despite all odds. In the book, she points out the shortcomings of traditional charities while paving the way for a new form of philanthropic investing called “patient capital”. Her story surely will provide the missing piece for those struggling to change the world.

6. Gerald Chertavian’s A Year Up

Gerald Chertavian is a successful technology entrepreneur and banker who dedicated his life and business expertise to founding Year Up in the year 2000 – an intensive one-year program that provides young aspirants with training, mentorship, internships, and ultimately real jobs. A Year Up is the testimonial of its namesake initiative by Chertavian, in which he explains his philosophy, offering a roadmap for real change and a beacon for young people seeking the opportunity to enter the economic mainstream. It lets students share their own challenges, failures, and personal achievements they’ve experienced during their program year.

7. Ryan Honeyman’s B Corp Handbook

This book is a must read for all those aspirants who are interested in learning how to build a business as a ‘force for good’. Through this book, B Corp owner and sustainability consultant, Ryan Honeyman shows that using business as a force for good can go a long way in helping to attract and retain the best talent, distinguish one’s company in a crowded market, and gain customer trust and loyalty.

8.Matthew Bishop and Michael Green’s Philanthrocapitalism  

Usually, philanthropists believe charity to be giving away money, but ‘Philanthrocapitalists’ are the new generation of billionaires or rather ‘social investors’ who are using business style strategies to reshape the world. In Philanthrocapitalism, Matthew Bishop and Michael Green explore this new movement and its implications by including interviews of some the most influential people in the world, such as Bill Gates, Bill Clinton, George Soros, Angelina Jolie, and Bono, to name a few. The book fuses expert analysis along with a peek into the profiles of the wealthy and powerful to talk about their efforts towards social causes.

9. Daniel Lubetzky’s Do the KIND Thing

In this book, Daniel Lubetzky, the CEO of KIND Healthy Snacks,  shares the revolutionary principles that have shaped KIND’s business model and led to its success, while proving that financial success and accomplishing a social goal aren’t incompatible. In a platform where other companies allow circumstances to manipulate the choice between two seemingly incompatible options, people at KIND believe in the power of “AND”. Primarily this idea is about challenging assumptions and false compromises. Do the KIND Thing is an inspirational read that shows how the power of ‘AND’ could empower the next generation of social entrepreneurs to change the world.

 10. Roger Martin and Sally Osberg’s Getting Beyond Better

Through this book strategy guru Roger L. Martin and Skoll Foundation President and CEO Sally R. Osberg, probe into the world of social entrepreneurship and elaborate how social entrepreneurs disrupt existing old orders to transform them into entirely fresh, superior, and sustainable equilibria. The authors have enriched the book by offering examples, personal stories, and sharing all the implements required for creating a positive impact. Getting Beyond Better demonstrates how meaningful change actually takes place in the world and provides concrete lessons and a practical model for businesses, policymakers, civil society organizations, and individuals who seek to transform our world for good.

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