Cutting edge social innovators should consider hybrid models
Over the past fifteen years, I've had the opportunity to provide strategy for well over a hundred social change start-ups seeking to make the world a better place. The most common question they ask, "Should we be a for-profit or a nonprofit."
My answer, "Why not consider both?" Let's review the advantages and disadvantages.
Mark Zuckerberg has infamously downplayed Facebook's responsibilities as a business in the content creation space. Instead, he defends it as a technology platform.
Is it time for faith communities to reclaim the role as moral teachers in American business? Let's look at what Mark Zuckerberg had to say during his recent Senate testimony:
We’re in a period now where capitalism is going to have to recreate itself because that selfishness works to an extent but it does leave people behind.
You could argue that capitalism in general and free markets are premised on the fact that when you harness your selfishness you can be more successful. That's Libertarianism. You could say it’s free market capitalism. And I think it’s a pretty good reading of human nature that when we’ve done collective governments around the world it didn’t work so well. So harnessing selfishness has its advantages.
Does President Obama need to learn to speak Republican? He probably will if he wants to be successful in a second term (if elected). Furthermore, you can become a better communicator if you follow Richard Tafel's advice on how to get into the mindset of someone with a different viewpoint.
Rich Tafel is founder of The Public Squared, a public policy training program for nonprofits and social entrepreneurs.
For the last decade, Tafel has provided strategic policy advice to nonprofits on a variety of causes, including AIDS programs for Africa, civil rights programs Latin America, and education and health care reform in the United States. He is a guest lecturer in Urban Health and Advocacy at Johns Hopkins University.
Prior to his international consulting, Tafel founded the Log Cabin Republicans in 1993. During his tenure, the Log Cabin Republicans went from an unknown entity to a well-known brand in American political life. At the height of the culture wars, he debated the likes of the Reverend Jerry Fallwell on Larry King Live. He has appeared on most major political TV programs and fought for appropriate AIDS funding and equality for gays and lesbians. He testified before Congress on the need to support the Ryan White Care Act. In 1999, he authored Party Crasher: A Gay Republican Challenges Politics as Usual. Tafel has also been appointed by Governor Weld (R-MA) to manage the adolescent health programs of Massachusetts.
Tafel's work in the public policy arena for social justice causes is inspired by his faith. After graduating from Harvard Divinity School he served at the University Chapel. He is an ordained minister in the Swedenborgian Church. He is a certified coach through Franklin Covey and certified through the International Coaching Association. He's an alumni of the Prince of Wales, Business and Sustainability Program, Cambridge College.