Mountain Khakis Partners with Fair Trade USA on Responsible Manufacturing Program

Mountain Khakis, a leading mountain-inspired lifestyle apparel brand, announces today that it will offer Fair Trade Certified™ apparel beginning with its Spring 2016 collections for men and women.

Mountain Khakis joins an elite group of outdoor and apparel brands partnering with Fair Trade USA, including Patagonia® and PrAna®.  The partnership gives workers a voice, and ensures rigorous standards that improve worker […]

Why Mandatory Reporting Is The Key to Better Benchmarking

So why benchmark? Companies that grasp the importance of a solid sustainability strategy (and view it as an asset rather than a hindrance) know investors increasingly value this forward-thinking approach. In addition, knowing where you stand against your competitors and identifying strengths and weaknesses for improved strategic decision-making can help your corporation drive innovation and increase bottom line benefits. But […]

11 things we learned about social enterprise in international development

1. The scale of social enterprises varies globally

2. Social enterprise is about impacts

Positive impacts can be seen in a number of ways: in what a social enterprise produces or sells, for example, or by the way it does business. “Most of our work is agricultural so we are particularly interested in enterprises that go out of their way to include […]

Infographic: 9 Types of Collaborators

Collaboration, when all is in synch, is magical. Synergy is abound, no goal is out of reach, and nothing is impossible. When that dynamic goes awry, however, the balance is upended and even getting through simple tasks can feel labor-intensive and tolling.

This is a great infographic by the Central Desktop Blog and published on Visual.ly that gives a nice overview […]

Leading By Being (Not Just Doing)

It seems that too often we celebrate actions and intentions, the what and the why of the things we do in life, but it’s less often that we reflect on the how: how did we behave, think, learn and “be” to be successful. When running a youth leadership organization and travel company I founded in Cambodia, I would often get […]

How To Monetize Forest Conservation

Like many highly prized hardwood trees, Hawaii’s mighty Koas have been disappearing at an alarming rate. Sought-after for furniture and guitar-making, boats, and housing, there are said now to be only 10% of the Koas that there were 200 years ago. At the current pace of replanting, the species could be virtually wiped out in a decade or two.

That’s where […]

How Social Impact Storytelling Is Different

 
How is a social impact pitch different from other kinds of startup and company pitches?
1. You have to tell the most compelling version of the story (even especially the emotional / non-business part). After interviewing dozens of thinkers and doers in the social impact space, one thing has become clear. The why that inspires a social innovator’s work often eclipses […]

Parents Combat Gender Stereotypes with Futuristic Clothing

Designer Tiffe Fermaint and her fiancé Keith Walker hope that their kids’ clothing line will provide a cool alternative to the countless children’s brands that promote harmful gender stereotypes.

Inspired by the birth of their daughter Violet, Fermaint and Walker launched Baby Teith in 2013. Fermaint told The Huffington Post that she searched in vain for clothing that was gender neutral and […]

New York Coffee Chain Blends Business And Charity For Success

It’s not unusual for a small business to work with community nonprofit groups, but a New York-based chain of coffee shops is taking that partnership further.

Coffeed operates six cafes in New York, plus a restaurant in Fort Tryon Park in Manhattan and a new location in Seoul, South Korea. The company partners with a different charity at each location.As Inc. […]

Disrupting The Informal Labor Market in Pakistan

The labor market in Pakistan is dangerously unregulated, unstructured, and operates mainly on an informal basis. While the largest chunk is employed by the agriculture sector, there is also a significant informal market catering to the retail, construction, and household services industries. Affluent Pakistani families employ cooks, drivers, nannies, and gardeners to serve them. Most employment is arranged through personal […]

Sourcing Matters: Becoming More Intentional

Doing business profitably, while minimizing societal harm – and potentially doing good – has become an essential strategy for large corporations and institutions. Call it corporate citizenship, conscious capitalism, shared value or triple bottom line (Profit, People, Planet). Now socially responsible business practices are no longer restricted to the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) department. Conscious capitalism has not only changed […]

Social Venture Success: On Stance, Story and Strategy

Everybody has a story. Throughout my 20s, I was a workaholic. I was never present, and my dream was to sell my business. It wasn’t until I achieved my goal and made lots of money that I realized that this kind of success didn’t make me happy. In fact, it made me miserable.

This experience – and hiring an amazing business […]

How Social Ventures Can Advance Public Health And Social Care

As the recent party conferences and Scottish referendum have proved, health and social care are at the centre of political attention – and will be crucial in general election campaigns. This is with good reason: we are in a period of challenges where health services are concerned. Many NHS trusts are already significantly in deficit, and the strain is beginning to show across the country.

What […]

Corporate Social Responsibility’s Relationship to Social Enterprise

We did not delve into the efficacy of the initiatives. But from the description, most of the initiatives seem like one of projects which do not necessarily have an impact sustainable over the longer term.

I believe that with the push from the government, corporations big and small have an opportunity to make a phenomenal difference to our society and environment, […]

B Corps Movement Eyeing Expansion in Asia

Among the B Corps that you may already know and whose products you use are Ben & Jerry’s, Patagonia, Couchsurfing International and Etsy. In fact, more than 1,200 firms from 38 countries and 121 industries are now certified B Corps, with more being added every week.

A B Corp is essentially a sustainable business or social enterprise that voluntarily meets higher […]

Startups: Employees or Independent Contractors?

Good news… your business or organization has more work than you can handle on your own! Now it’s time to hire some help. But before you dive in, there are important issues to consider in terms of the laws that will apply to employees vs independent contractors.
Why does it matter if workers are classified as employees vs. independent contractors?
Simply put, […]

The Embedded Social Entrepreneur

Entrepreneurs who operate in impoverished regions of the world face a quandary: Even though the need for their products and services is enormous, the challenge of bringing those products and services to market can be nearly insurmountable. Without access to mass media or even mass communications, entrepreneurs have no established channels through which to reach potential customers. Few of those […]

Be The Change and Certify as a B Corporation

I recently participated on a panel discussion as part of a conference on creativity for MBA students. The subject veered into the territory of a corporation’s social responsibility, and a banker on the panel—a really sharp guy—said that as far as he was concerned, if you created a job, you had fulfilled a social promise.

He also admonished the audience against […]

Prioritizing Social Enterprise Sustainability

Despite the conventional wisdom that organizations that invest in developing a robust infrastructure are more likely to succeed and recognition of financial support for capacity building as a philanthropic best practice by Grantmakers for Effective Organizations, social impact funders have yet to collectively make a substantial financial commitment to building organizational capacity. In an article published by Stanford Social Innovation […]