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In developing countries around the world, small business owners with dreams of doing more for their families and communities find themselves in this impossible situation.
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For a small percentage of us, if we are lucky enough, we might already have a friend or relative working in our desired industry who can help us get a foot in the door. But in reality, simply possessing a diploma doesn't always translate into finding a job right away. What then are some other options that a new graduate might look at?
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Have you heard about social enterprises? Social enterprises apply business solutions to social problems. They're incredibly hot right now. So hot, in fact, that I've just come back from the Social Capital Markets (SOCAP) conference in San Francisco where there were over 2000 attendees.
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In May 2015, the French government did something incredible: the National Assembly unanimously passed a law forcing large supermarkets to donate unsold food to charities. That's how the #WhatAWaste campaign -- a grassroots effort to pressure Canada's political leaders to follow France's example -- was born.
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Here are my 10 favourite tips to help you make the most of your Facebook fan page to help you grow your business.
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Dave Baker is a used car salesman on a mission to make Canada a more fair and equitable place. Go ahead and take a moment. Be skeptical. It took me six months to overcome my initial aversion to the predominant narrative of auto sales. I was sure that there was a catch. There had to be a bait-and-switch somewhere along the way.
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When I see a small business plugging away all the while continuing their charitable and community-spirited endeavours (often in the face of near-insurmountable odds), it behooves all of us to reconsider what it means to be "productive."
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As the end of the year comes to a close, industry leaders are already preparing for what's next and refining their 2016 strategies to stay on top of the market. With baby boomers retiring and millennials being the most studied generation to date, market leaders can gain insight from the next generation, Generation Z.
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These companies have already touched your life. Beyond the big names like Ben & Jerry's ice cream, Patagonia clothing, Etsy, or Kickstarter, there are impact-driven business leaders making significant money while making an amazing difference in communities all around us.
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If play opens people up, will they be more receptive to dry or challenging topics? I believe that the philosophy of health can be covertly inserted into play like a soldier hiding in a Trojan horse. In fact, didn't our parents send us out to play but were actually getting us to exercise?
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In an age where one well-placed tweet or a vine secretly filmed by an unengaged employee or unsatisfied customer can cost a company millions of dollars, business leaders will have to adapt or die. The inner workings of a company are no longer strictly "inner." And within this reality, transparency is the secret weapon for leaders in the new economy.
They say that necessity is the mother of invention. When Mom Necessity visited Sam Goldman one dark African night, she came disguised as a broken lantern and a poisonous snake.
For years, I've tried to do it all as a maverick. I've turned down many opportunities to collaborate with people or organizations that stray even slightly from my purist intentions. But if I've learned anything over the past year, it's that the more vulnerable I'm able to be, the more the world becomes vulnerable.
At 23 years of age, Nasreen Sheikh radically redefines what it means to be a Nepali woman. She is a Sunni Muslim living in a predominately Hindu community and is the founder of a fair-trade sewing collective called Local Women's Handicrafts. Nasreen is an outlier in her community. Typically, most Nepali girls marry between the ages of 15 and 18. The pressure to have a married daughter began to increase with each year Nasreen remained single however, and in 2014, Nasreen's parents decided that they had to take action. For Nasreen, this arranged marriage would have meant the end of Local Women's Handicrafts.
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In these heady days of waste reduction and sustainable food production, food recovery tackles our most bourgeois societal needs for perfect looking produce. For decades, North Americans have been turning their noses up at apple wormholes and rusty romaine lettuce, and produce retailers have caught on.
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If you are an entrepreneur, be proud to hold this title and live up to its name. Also understand that you are leading a long overdue generational shift across sectors and it will take some time before your path may be embraced by all. Don't let the resistance discourage you from your ambitions.
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Every day I have really interesting conversations with creatives and technical folk about my decision to work with Freelancer.com and how we connect people to design, build, write and create businesse...
We tend to be so hung up on rising to the top that we fail to realize that being overly competitive can actually push us down. True greatness comes to those who elevate others; who lift them up without regard to where it will place them in the hierarchy of the marketplace of life.
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I am not saying that we should not strive to be the very best people and professionals we can be. This is not a call to "lean out." By all means, let's strive to be amazing, but let's also aspire to be more gentle with ourselves and with others.
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The purpose behind this journey of over 1000 miles is much bigger than me. It's a quest to highlight solutions to some of our biggest global challenges, and begin the process of implementing them in areas that need it. Which challenges am I speaking about?
The oldest Wink team member is 27. Does that help or hurt them? According to Wolff, "Our youth is a double-edged sword. We are flexible when it comes to making decisions and make them swiftly, while being able to stay up all night working if need be. We're also the same age as the majority of our customers -- allowing us to truly tap into the pulse of their wants and needs."
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I was thrilled to participate in my first ever 'live' event as a Global Shaper of the World Economic Forum. But after hearing endless stories about the glamour of Davos, I certainly never expected that my involvement with the Shapers would bring me to Detroit.
So we did what we thought was right and forged on. It was an exciting time to be a woman entrepreneur in Canada.
Entrepreneurship is about going over, around, under or right through obstacles. It's not for the faint of heart. "It's not just the one who has the most money wins. It's how much are you giving? How much dignity are you giving? How much are you enabling others to gain?"
Social entrepreneurs are an interesting and, in many respects, a hard-to-define breed. Their principles do not fit neatly into the predefined parameters that have been established in for-profit entrepreneurship or charitable organizations. These constantly evolving principles of social entrepreneurship include:
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In every business book in every business school in the world, the mandate of business is solely to maximize profit for shareholders. The rule of the game CEOs of the last 50 years were playing was "profit at all costs." Social impact was something you considered afterwards, maybe. The baby boomers may not have considered people and planet but they raised a generation of self-actualized, mission-based children.
Money shouldn't dictate your success or potential. While it may be more difficult without funding to bring your idea to reality, it doesn't mean it can't be done.In fact in some ways it can be a blessing in disguise. Your passion will be put to the test, your vision will be challenged and with each roadblock your determination will strengthen as your vision grows.
Like the ancient Greek poet Sappho, I revere women. Rubenesque. Skinny. Tall. Short. Old. Young. Hourglass. Pear. Every woman. But when I contemplate fashion's cult of perfection and the rise of eating disorders and so-called "fat-shaming," I think beauty standards have become a form of tyranny.
"I think a lot of entrepreneurs -- women and men -- ted to try and do everything themselves," says Natalie Sisson. "And that's where it goes wrong." If you're an aspiring entrepreneur you MUST check out The Suitcase Entrepreneur for easy and affordable bizhacks, from tech tips to marketing tools.
One can easily see the allure of focusing on millennial entrepreneurs. Their youth and inexperience allows them develop innovative solutions and ideas and their low overhead enables to them to work on what Y Combinator's Paul Graham famously called the "ramen diet" where the only food entrepreneurs can afford is ramen noodles.
I sought to find my inner force through Institute B's second Changemakers workshop on "Authentic Leadership". Institute B is a Vancouver-based startup accelerator that provides guidance, funding and education to local entrepreneurs and their nascent companies. Institute B focuses on helping socially-conscious companies and people whom do not sacrifice making the world better for profit.
At the risk of sounding a bit existential, B Corps are businesses, fundamentally bent toward a greater purpose. They recognize that degrees of intentionality go a long way when it comes to making employees' lives a little bit better.