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Mission Possible: Social Enterprise

David Lifsey, President and CEO

There’s a new term that’s gaining momentum, both in the for-profit and not-for-profit world.  That term is social entrepreneurship and at its core, it places emphasis on conducting business for the greater good, for social change. The concept can be applied to both not-for-profits such as our Goodwill, and by for-profit companies, which often rely on corporate earnings as a measurement for success and financial gain.  This same business principle can be applied to a not–for-profit’s mission, like our Goodwill, to ensure we are gaining the most for our clients through our mission.

It seems that any not-for-profit that is successful in meeting its mission has skills, services or products that could be elevated to bring in money for mission and may have market value beyond its walls.  Finding creative ways to market those elements will bring new money to the not-for-profit and that new money will allow for expansion of mission services and freedom to venture into new areas of service.

Certainly applying business principles has allowed our Goodwill to expand our mission.  We can employ more people, develop programs in response to community need, and individualize our services with much more freedom with money we earn than with the money we once received from government agencies or community support organizations.  Social enterprise is a smart way for our Goodwill to continue providing value to the clients we serve.

1 Comment
  • Debbie Pickard
    Posted at 09:27h, 02 November Reply

    Both me and my husband are addicted to GOODWILL. We go to at least one and most weeks more than one store. Just want to know HOW we could get a GoodWill store in our county. Both of us are retired and now want to do something that WE want to do. Hope to hear an answer soon. Thanks, Debbie

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