Social Purpose Drives Startups
Part 1. What’s Your Point? PODCAST
Launch Day Perspectives PODCAST
Entrepreneurs Lino Falotico and Alicia Zadravec of InnerBalanceWear.com candidly share thoughts on inner balance and on integrating social purpose into their business venture. Are you searching for social purpose to enrich your work, contribute to obvious local need, and reach out to new target groups? Listen in…
PODCAST Highlights: 18:53 minutes
00:48 Lino Falotico’s social purpose & inner balance
04:16 Epiphany…from caterer to designer
05:56 Lino: “I believe my product will…” invisible awareness
08:20 Lino: “20 seconds” next step after epiphany
09:49 Evolution of the business concept of Inner Balance
11:26 Alicia: “Why underwear…”
13:34 The practical side…manufacturing
16:39 7% of net proceeds to Mental Health Awareness…
Part 2. Article: “5 Tips for Successfully Pursuing Social Purpose”
Before you plunge into a new social venture, consider our social-purpose example and these 5 Tips for Successful Pursuit which reveal the driving force of social purpose. This article adopts the perspective of real estate and related financial professionals to explore integration of social purpose into a practice. Simple extrapolation into other professions and business ventures requires only a pinch of imagination. Plus more on Startup InnerBalanceWear.com…
Part 3. Where Does Humor Fit into Social Purpose?
Increasing numbers of professionals, entrepreneurs, and business owners want to integrate social purpose into their business venture. Their reasons for doing so, range from personal involvement to client-based concern. In all cases, if social purpose is poorly or sloppily handled, it can setback the cause and undermine business relationships.
When social purpose is your intent, you’ll probably have to address sensitive topics and discuss subjects that can cause offense or upset. Language has evolved over this century to include more and more topics previously rarely spoken of. Have we improved our communication skills or vocabulary to be sure the point can be made clearly and sensitively?
Before you plunge into marketing and sales content and campaigns to spread the word about your social purpose, make sure you won’t get tripped by ignorance or blind-sided by overlooked perspectives. For instance, when considering your social purpose, invest time analyzing where humor comes in and where it definitely doesn’t fit:
- Don’t assume your taste, experience, or education dictates what others think or react to. Consider the long list of social media “foot in mouth” incidents from the well-meaning.
- Research the history of your social subject to clarify persistent misconceptions. Talk to those who really know about a subject and you’ll discover an amazing list of things the public misunderstand. Communicating your perspective will involve clarifying this confusion and make you a recognized expert.
- Expand your understanding of related issues rather than investigating your social issue as if it exists in isolation. If you are already involved in the social issue, you may be too close to see the big picture. If you’ve only recently come across this issue, there may be a lot to learn.
- Do you know enough about those who are directly and indirectly affected by this social issue? Assumptions are dangerous and often counter-productive.
- Avoid impromptu responses, discussions, or interviews until professional communicators have helped you. They will clarify your social message, the match between this message and your business issues, and what you want to change about the current social situation. Start with clear simple messages and that will attract experts as well as those directly involved. These people will help build momentum for the cause that they also believe in.
Humor can add another element of complexity
If the social purpose involves changing views that included laughing at people or their behavior, then misunderstandings can complicate the situation. Remember that humor is an attitude. You’ll understand that changing the perspectives on your chosen subject will involve permanently shifting attitudes. How does that align with the client education that helps clients achieve the best results when they use your products or services?
Humor is not always about the punchline or a belly laugh. Often it revolves around every-day occurrences and involvements. When humor is properly applied, attention spans increase and learning increases:
- Humor can bring people together quickly or widen the divide between them. What are the tensions associated with the social purpose you’re considering? Will humor reduce those tensions or could it inadvertently increase stress?
- Humor can reveal common ground, common misconceptions, and the silly side of misunderstandings and miscommunication. Jokes and stories that make fun of others can build barriers and entrench resentment. What language, stereotypes, or misconception could build barriers?
- If you want to use humor to raise morale, build teams, and enhance rapport to build awareness of the issues associated with your selected social purpose, you must understand the issues from all perspectives.
- Humor may provide strong ways to offer coping mechanisms for those involved during the transition or in the new solutions you propose. People like working and volunteering in positive, optimistic workplaces, so humor will become an asset when intelligently and appropriately applied.
Just because you can get a laugh or tell jokes well, does not mean you understand how to professionally communicate with humor.
The unpracticed speaker often repeats catchphrases and cliché which perpetuate ageism, sexism, and other prejudices. Some people will tell you directly that you have made a serious misstatement, but social media is driven by those who’ll tell others, with much embellishment, about your misstep.
How helpful can you be to your social cause if you cannot communicate the point of your social purpose clearly in every medium, on all platforms your targets frequent?
For more on Forward Thinking, visit these posts:
- 5 Foresight Strategies for Avoiding Hindsight Remorse
- 4 Signs of Invisible Procrastination
- An example of extrapolation: Coaching in the context of the financial and real estate industries. What can hold you back? Are you prepared for coaching success?
For more on PJ’s work as The Catalyst, visit www.TheCatalyst.com