Image

Power of Storytelling

Every known civilization in this world has been built based on stories. For time immemorial human beings have been using the different type of stories to create civilizations. Humankind has forayed into agriculture by building a narrative well supported by different kind of myths. The ability of stories to usher new changes are immense, that is evident since evolution throughout our history. But it also matters how effectively can we use stories to change the existing situation, lead the society for a better tomorrow.
Fast- forward to present we are facing several issues in the form of climate change, poverty & inequality. To overcome the present predicament that we are in, powerful stories can bring big changes in the collective consciousness of society. The positive stories can not only be inspirational but also can create systematic changes in society. Real-time examples of successful social entrepreneurship models can really act as a direct route to emotions, hence it helps in decision making. Stories can set new patterns that create a positive impact on the way we think and behave. Powerful stories play a foundational role in changing the values, mindsets & goals.

Stories illuminate
Stores can act as light, glue or web, yet it has a powerful sense to change the way we behave, act and indulge. The point to drive home here is that in today’s chaotic world building positive narratives through powerful stories is very crucial. For instance, supporting and promoting niches in innovation for social welfare can create a wider impact in the system, it builds narratives with a purpose to change the world for a better tomorrow. The stories of people who have been making slow changes in the society need to be highlighted with good supporting narratives. Such impactful peoples’ life needs to be amplified to a larger crowd through powerful stories by leveraging the available platforms.

Changing the future
We can use stories to create riveting visions that can bring desired changes with a purpose. The stories can help to humanize issues. For instance, impactful social business models need to be communicated properly, the desired impact aimed from the business needs to be highlighted regularly with personal examples & narratives. The compelling reasons to become outlier by thinking differently for a better cause. Stories should be built in such a way to highlight the success stories more often than usual
Stories can act as a tool to build a strong community through empathy & unity. Though It helps people to connect across communities and as a glue that holds everyone together.

Way forward
The only way forward to tackle the existing problems is through collective responsibility. Any individual or organisation taking up such causes needs to be given due importance and their activities, efforts need to pass on to larger society through effective stories. Because the world needs more such stories more than the past, Those who are making steady progress in such areas needs to be accepted with respect. However, it is equally important to let others be motivated by hearing such captivating stories that can as a catalyst for a change. So lets all welcome and follow such success stories from business, art, environment and other social issues.

Advertisements

Social business

download (2)

 

 

Nobel laureate Mohammed Yunus from Bangladesh defines social business as a self-sustainable business created, designed to address the social problems. The social business is a not a new model per se, but it is a new approach of looking at the business with a different perspective to create maximum social impact in the society. The social business model requires new thinking with the aspect of creating maximum value in the society taking the community and the people together for a common good. When the business entity starts focussing the new path it bounds to create altruist impact in the society. However, it should be based on acceptance, embrace the problems faced by the society through collective action with an objective to bring perceptible changes in the quality of life of people. This new approach could create a lasting impact on the society by accepting, collectively to create opportunities for everyone in the community. Besides, that approach has the potential to create an environment of right balance and hence can act as a catalyst for change. Also, the new role if adopted can alter the existing business’ equation significantly in the society by becoming more inclusive in approach & behaviour.

Social business a moment of truth

Time has come for business houses to realise the moment of truth by thinking the way it conducts its business. The moment of truth means business houses need to think and behave as if they are part of the environment and society in which it operates. The moment they see themselves as a separate entity from the society, it leads to the creation of more friction with its external stakeholders and also cannot strike a right chord with the society.

Importance of shared value creation

The current business practices have created enough mess on the environment and society, So the situation certainly calls for a shared value creation means business houses need to extend their hands towards society in which they operate. The decision makers and the employers should internalise themselves the consequence of their action on the society. Henceforth a constant effort and need of the hour is to bring business and society together. Also social business to a great extent can create social harmony and sustainable growth.
Nestle the Global multinational giant has redesigned its coffee procurement process working extensively with small farmers who were trapped in low productivity and poor quality due to environmental degradation. The role of Nestle as a company in giving advice on new farming practices, providing the farmers with plant stocks, distributing fertilizer and pesticides and last but not least company paid the farmers in premium for cultivating quality coffee beans. The social impact created by this move has helped the small farmers in distress and improved their economic benefits and also helped to improve their quality of life.

Impact investment via social business.

Resourceful action seriously can create an impact in the society and could solve the problems faced by society at large, provided stakeholders of the company to act creatively with a mind to usher maximum positive impact in the society. The existing capitalistic business models has been creating unequal scenarios and sapping resources with no remorse has already weakened the nature and society . So going forward if they continue to do same means it would create detrimental effects on the community, natural resources and economy. So social business is the new model of capitalism where owners decide not to take the dividends but keep reinvesting the financial resources for new social business ideas in order to a create much larger impact in the society. Besides, that concentration of wealth in the hands of few can be reduced and effective deployment of resources to the population at the bottom of the pyramid.

 

what-is-social-business1

 

Governments’ role as a facilitator

Elected government through its administration alone cannot suffice the role in bringing radical changes in the society and it has proven beyond doubt that collective effort from business houses and industry leaders could bring a very positive and impact full change in the status quo. So Government as a dispensation should become more of a facilitator in framing new laws and policies for a smooth operation of social business models across different areas. Since the magnitude of the problems faced by the majority of the population is huge, it is also equally important that all stakeholders in the society should think and act with empathy to get rid of the issues faced by the society. Hindsight issues at hand certainly ask for fundamental changes the investment made on business and how the profits made out of the business get redeployed to create maximum social impact. The government should come forward with policies to create an environment for such a smooth transition. When proper policies are in place might pursue business houses and its owners to proactively take up the most pressing issues in the society and unitedly find solutions by giving the opportunity for everyone’s sustenance.

Discover latest Indian Blogs

To make innovation counts

helpusgreen founders

The river Ganges holds such an important place in the collective consciousness of our nation perhaps its significance stems from its  tradition & mythology. River Ganga is  India’s largest and most vital fresh-water resources. But the irony is that it is among the most polluted river in the world. Although we revere the river Ganga as a mother goddess, however, on the other hand, the river gets polluted by our irresponsible behaviour by allowing the sewage water & solid waste from household and industries. The pilgrims add more than 8 million flowers each year into the river as a part offering prayers to god. The resultant action pollutes the water more with harmful chemicals used on the flower which can lead to waterborne diseases like cholera, dysentery, hepatitis & diarrhoea.

Ganga pollution data.png

 

 

In 2015, the childhood friends Ankit agarwal and Karan Rastogi cofounded a social enterprise called HelpUsGreen. The aim of this enterprise is to devote their time and resource in reducing the pollution in river Ganga. The Team collects the discarded flower before it gets into river and processes them to create 100 percent Vermi-compost fertilizers and also manufactures incense sticks . The enterprise targets European and Indian markets to sell their organic products . HelpUsGreen employs women folks from the lower strata of the society and helps them to get empowered financially as well as delivering on the objective of reducing the pollution of this giant fresh water river. The team of women employed with Help Us Green collects 1.5tons of flowers daily from temples and mosques and convert it into organic fertilisers and incense sticks. 

Helpusgreen also has plans to expand its product ranges to bath soaps, chemical free products, natural body cleaners. So this  is one such social enterprise initiative which can deliver benefits in terms of reducing pollution, create avenues of people to get employed , also protecting the environment from waste accumulation . This kind of initiatives which uses the potential of resources and keeps their utility to the maximum by following innovative business practices, also creates value along with its process. 

Mensturation Man, Mr A.Muruganantham

Few entrepreneurs might dare to choose the business what Mr Arunachalam Muruganathan ventured in to, The social entrepreneurs from Coimbatore has invented a very cheap sanitary making equipment which could make cheap sanitary pads for women with half the cost what is available in the stores. His organisation “Jayashree industries” have already installed this low-cost equipment in 23 states in India and aggressively pursuing his objective to set up his manufacturing unit in 106 nations. The speciality of his equipment is that women can manufacture the sanitary napkins using his equipment.

His journey so far

He was born in 1962 to a family of handloom weavers in Coimbatore, his early life was riddled with poverty and his father passed away after met with an accident , So only source of the income to the family was from his mother who tried to make both ends meets , But at the age of 14 Arunachalam dropped out from school and after that he was engaged in various jobs to support his family .

Moments of success

Mr Arunachalam got married in 1998 and found that his wife uses filthy clothes or unhygienic means during her menstrual cycle. This moment of realisation had really invoked the social entrepreneur in him, he tried and did a lot of research in designing a sanitary napkin using different mills but initially he was unsuccessful to design one such, But his unrelenting pursuit to find a solution led him to research further and finally he had succeeded in making one, But his wife instead of supporting him, left the scene by giving a divorce letter. But the successful entrepreneur in him has succeeded in making a low-cost equipment to manufacture sanitary napkins, he received wide acclaims and several awards for his outstanding success.
In 2014, TIME magazine placed him on its list of 100 Most Influential People in the World and In 2016, he was awarded Padma Shri by Government of India. After 5 years his wife reunited with him realising the success he has achieved and more over the initiative he has taken to address the most pressing issue faced by women folks from low-income group, especially from the rural sector. His efforts have really made him qualify to be in the legions of the most successful social entrepreneur in the contemporary world. In his words, he believes in “de-tailing”, not” re-tailing”. He travelled across the world and shared the dais with global business leaders and through his initiative, he has created a social impact by giving employment for 20,000 women. A Bollywood film “pad-man” has been in the making starring Akshay Kumar based on his story.

 

Leaders&leadership

Although leader & leadership is widely discussed and deliberated topic with various  divergent opinions about how his or her leadership should be. Or certain  style of leadership traits are only more relevant to particular time periods in the history, or just because a particular type of leadership has granted success. so should that be all weather approach to success for ever?  Still, there are many instances for people to look back into the history and being hailed the likes of  Hitlers, Stalin, Mussolini’s success a leader who was all set out to conquer the world with thier  brutal force. Even today many of them believe that Hitler’s type of leadership is very much required in the contemporary world to over come the world is facing today. I think the world has moved a lot from the Hitler’s period. There are  examples of many political leaders  who had made significant changes , but it carried a huge cost by crushing many millions of peoples life, using most heinous methods of execution, gave scant regard for people’s concerns and feelings, Not providing any space for consultation , but only inflicting or pushing ones idea and visions in to others throat. But in a way history has been benevolent to such extent by not allowing them to continuously be at the top. If you ask anyone today they have different perceptions how their nation’s  leadership should be.However  if we have been  fliping  through the pages of world history, certainly most of the leaders and their leadership styles are more over similar ie is authoritarian style, but very few among the legacy of leaders stands rest from the crowd like great Mahatma Gandhi.

But in the present world order, I think we need a more inclusive style rather than one who pursue the exclusionary style of leadership. Because the exclusionary style of leadership is inherently creating a constituency which is more of a  people who fits into the narrative, by smartly excluding certain classes of people belong to certain caste, creed, race & religion. Although we have witnessed exclusionary style of leadership in the past, in the present global order begs leaders who ought to be inclusionary in nature. Other wise going forward our world is going to be a dangerous place to be in. The challenges faced by us has grown manifold, So to tackle all those critical problems, a new change in approach in leadership is more ideal in all respects.  Contemporary leaderships in the world needs a paradigm shift in thinking, The livers  of wielding power over less developed nations through economic power or military power is not going to stay for ever. So today’s leader should embrace the quality of egalitarian society, sharing natural resources for everyone’s survival , New global order in the future shouldn’t be purely on the basis of economic supremacy, the GDP, driving stocks to new levels creating more wealth for the shareholders, creating policies for few  to get in to billionaires club. In the hindsight, such animal instincts of amassing more wealth & resources by hook or crook have a limit. Because we are living in a world of  finite resources  But if  world’s  has been thinking of making an infinite profit out from a finite resource is perhaps the most foolish decision one could ever think of, But corporation & business leaders& political heads has been pursuing the policy of morally equating success with profit .

Take for the instance in the world of politics  ,we have several types of  people who has been anointed as the heads of their respective countries, rulers after rulers who has been playing the role of state, elected leaders, military dictatorship,  business leaders becoming political heads., So in all these categories of leadership types,  predominance of certain  traits makes them stand apart from the rest. But common characteristics which include drive, motivation, energy, tenacity&intiative. But broadly we can classify leaders into six according to the leadership styles.

Source :Harward Business review ,website: hbr.org

How a leader should be?

Out of the six listed leadership style, As a leader to be successful and effective one should have the multiple characteristics styles according to the circumstances. He or she should adopt combined traits to be successful and take the nation forward. A leader with one type of leadership traits can no longer take the responsibility forward, they might be successful in achieving short term success , but as a person who governs the nation should adopt different types leadership styles to evolve and sustain as a true leader who can make significant strides for a countries facing multitude of problems