Misfit & Balder association

The partnership between Misfit & Balder speciality foods seems to be a perfect example of social enterprises working in unison to create an impact. The duo believes in adding value to their products in the market by using the unused fruits & vegetables that are being thrown away as waste. The misfit is a Washington based startup founded by Phil Wong & Ann Yang in 2005 deals with cold pressing juices from fruit scraps. The innovative idea by the founders believes in creating product lines by converting one man’s trash to other man’s treasure. Around the globe, huge quantities of food are getting wasted, so the message is loud & clear from Misfit that they want to be in the forefront to fight this social issue with innovative ideas.
So the duo has decided to tie up with “Balder” one of the leading distributors of neatly cut fresh fruits & watermelons in the market. The process of producing neatly cuts fruits creates wastages daily, So finding this is an opportunity in 2016 Mist fit juicy has successfully tied up with Balder. Although balder is a large corporation involved in the distribution of perfectly sliced fruits to the grocery shops in the Northeast, yet they were clueless in minimising the wastages during the process. Amid all the daily wastages Balder has agreed to sell its carrot tops and trimmings to misfit, This resulted in a significant reduction of wastage of food materials, wastages, Henceforth after the tie-up with misfit, balder started generating a fresh revenue stream by addressing the issue of food waste by associating with a social enterprise.

The partnership between misfit & Balder speciality foods seems to be a perfect example of social enterprises working in unison to create an impact. The duo believes in adding value to their products in the market by using the unused fruits & vegetables that are being thrown away as waste. The misfit is a Washington based startup founded by Phil Wong & Ann Yang in 2005 deals with cold pressing juices from fruit scraps. The innovative idea by the founders believes in creating product lines by converting one man’s trash to other man’s treasure. Around the globe, huge quantities of food are getting wasted, so the message is loud & clear from Misfit that they want to be in the forefront to fight this social issue with innovative ideas.
So the duo has decided to tie up with “Balder” one of the leading distributors of neatly cut fresh fruits & watermelons in the market. The process of producing neatly cuts fruits creates wastages daily, So finding this is an opportunity in 2016 Mist fit juicy has successfully tied up with Balder. Although balder is a large corporation involved in the distribution of perfectly sliced fruits to the grocery shops in the Northeast, yet they were clueless in minimising the wastages during the process. Amid all the daily wastages Balder has agreed to sell its carrot tops and trimmings to misfit, This resulted in a significant reduction of wastage of food materials, wastages, Henceforth after the tie-up with misfit, balder started generating a fresh revenue stream by addressing the issue of food waste by associating with a social enterprise.

Striking right partnership

The association between Misfit & Balder is a classic example of aligning one’s own business with a social enterprise to gain an advantage in the marketplace. The partnership with a social enterprise in today’s world increasingly makes more sense. It also helps both partners in creating social impact by keeping their bottom line in sync with the overall business objective. I think these models can be emulated better in developing markets like India in a big way. Traditionally every organisation gives more importance to improve their bottom line through delivering better value to its shareholders & investors. Now it is time to think beyond this notion in order to create a better social impact in the society. Founders of the Misfit feel sustainable business relationships not only add value overall but also helps to create a better social impact. In this case, Misfit as an organisation is successful as a social enterprise to leverage its strengths to create an authentic impact by addressing the pain points faced by large organisations. So any forward-thinking organisation for that matter can reap real benefits socially and financially by associating with such social enterprises.

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

Calibrating CSR in India

The CSR spending in India has seen a surge at CAGR of 14 % in the last two fiscal which is a promising sign despite having only 5% growth in their net profit. However, the majority of the corporates had taken the help of  NGO’s for  CSR spending it also means internally companies had deployed minimum resources to monitor their CSR activities. Perhaps post amendment of companies acts in 2013   business houses ever since has shown good compliance prescribed by the law.  But in a larger country like  India problems are galore in the areas of healthcare, education and the environment. Hence,  CSR funds could only account for a mere 1% of the total public spending in 2015-16. The spending model of  CSR funds in India are generally are programmatic grants. So in the hindsight to make a meaningful progress in CSR spending the very nature of their involvement needs to be evolved further to create a better impact.

CSR sector wise

Need for a  participatory approach

Generally, the CSR spending trend in India needs to get evolved from individuals to an Ecosystem where corporates can play a very proactive role in creating visible changes and perceptible impact on the problems faced by the society.  In order to create a larger impact, the existing model of CSR spending need changes and corporates should take serious initiative internally if they really want to create a meaningful impact in the society. Instead of being just grant givers, corporates should transform themselves from delivering services to building capacity & enabling the market for overall development.  The participatory approach should be a continuous affair whereby companies should constantly engage with various stakeholders in the society and ensure that measurable output is generated through their engagement.  Also, business houses internally should set an objective and drive those objectives meticulously similar to the ways how their business is been driven.

 

 

Become a catalyst for development

1)To become the catalyst for development, the companies in India should take various steps

2) Better use of resources and leveraging it effectively to create a better impact.

3) They need to establish better synergy between various players for the desired impact.

4) Bring in new stakeholders to the system and gain more competencies from them.

Promoting socially responsible business

Corporates should take a keen interest in promoting micro-entrepreneurs in the community, helping the people with financial support in starting a small business that could create a multiplier effect in the economy. So forging such useful long-term association can help improve the situation on the ground. Henceforth corporates in India should focus more one such aspect frequently rather than just becoming grant givers. The synergy between the various stakeholders in the society would help to create a win-win situation for all.

Importance of shared value creation

Beyond the corporates’ pet projects and largely advertised philanthropic activities, it only helps to improve the branding of the company and leaves very little to create an impact in the society. So beyond the objective of building a company’s brand, The active involvement in the society can only be achieved through “smart partnering “. Only through smart partnering creative solutions and strategies can be devised to address the very fundamental core issues faced by the society. The successful smart partnering initiative from HUL named “Project Shakthi”  was a very good initiative that had empowered the women folks in the rural sector by providing financial independence and have helped to achieve self-reliant.

Strengthening the core values internally&externally

Business creates impact, So it does matter how an organisation lives up to its core values extrinsically and intrinsically in relation to the society and vice-versa. How far corporates leaders are serious in practising those professed values in all aspects, Besides making profit business as an entity has a social commitment to the society or towards the community it operates. So it does matter the seriousness in which companies have aligned those core values to the overall development of the society. The whole aspect of doing business through the prism of generating value to shareholders should be replaced with a much more sanguine way of taking every other stakeholder together.

Engage the entire workforce and lead by example.

 When it comes to CSR, the workforce of every organisation is very crucial in bringing maximum benefits to the society. When it comes to employees they choose an organisation whose values resonates with them.It also helps in retaining existing as well as attracting fresh talents towards the organisation. Besides that activity that encourages the core values helps in improving the motivation level of employees which further leads to foster innovation and creative thinking in many spheres both inside and outside of the organisation.


Top post on IndiBlogger, the biggest community of Indian Bloggers

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. 

The story of Steve & Parvati

 

It is rare among the rarity of someone leaving one’s comfort of being the son of former governor and moreover to have had led the life of former fighter pilot in Indian Airforce. Yes, the life of Steve has been one such sort of journey in a remote location on the hills of Uttaranchal.
The couple Steve and Parvati have been a living a subsistence lifestyle for the last 30 years at their home which is 6500 feet above the sea level. When they first arrived at this place they have nothing at all to start with, but they have set out to lead a lifestyle under the auspices & bounties of nature with full of oak trees, birds chirping & clattering monkeys.
Over the years the couple has built a home on the site which was once a cow shed and live on a monthly income of 2000Rs . They raise money by renting a pair of small cottages for passing hikers as well through farming. Although now Steve’s house has electricity,  there no running water, or internet or any facility to warm when the temperature dips below zero degrees. According to Steve, he can’t  imagine living in any other place other than his 34-acre estate. He keeps regular patrol around his estate to ward of wood pinching locals at bay. 
Steve a Harvard educated the young chap met Parvati after he had been kicked out of the service for not following the orders. The couple has been living in this place for the last 33 years with no regrets. Their lifestyle has been a perfect example of leading a life which is near to nature devoid of any pollution or disturbances. Both He  & wife took care of there surroundings well without disturbing its ecosystem, Both their two kids were born and bought up in the estate, later they got educated from Delhi. Steve owns a couple of Royal Enfield bullets, which he likes repairing and riding them often.
Steve had dug a grave himself a long time back, he is well prepared to leave this world when he kicks his bucket.  Continue reading

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

Aside

Global Climate change and way forward

The 2015 united nations global climate change was recently got  concluded in Paris ,France , where a global agreement was signed by 196 representatives on an  agreed text after a  very long deliberation and representation  from  countries. The most important, notable fact is that globally this issue of global warming is getting acknowledged and some serious initiatives would be in its process to get it implemented in the coming years by nations on a global scale. Already the global climate changes and vagaries has shown how devastating the effects  could be on  our planet, We have seen many alarming situations like floods, famine and unprecedented increase in temperature which affects the agriculture , livestock  and people. We need to blame ourselves for forcing us to be in this predicament.

We have seen this multi- fold  increase in global climate change,   post industrialization, where no one ever thought of the consequences of this unbridled use of fossil fuels, industrial emission of gases in the environment , deforestation and many other reasons which are nothing but purely a reactions  of   human induced actions . We never thought or not given  any  importance for  a sustainable living in this blue planet.  Nations which are now Developed nations was  busy building their capacities  to become economic power , poor nation’s resources was being put to uncontrollable exploitation without  anticipating the danger in the foreseeable future  leads to destabilizing force which eventually would turns out to be a  global catastrophe .

Now the situation is little bit naive and complicated because of the simple reason  that in Paris they have agreed to set a limit of 2 degree Celsius by 2030 globally, How would it be possible for the developing and third world nations to rapidly switch to other alternative sources of energy creation? , Currently relatively cheap sources by using coal as input is the mainstay for the developing nations like India for addressing their energy needs. Richer and developed nations are in better position economically to invest in alternative sources like solar, wind and nuclear, but most populated and economically backward nations are not in a position to invest heavily on alternative energy sources.  How much and how far developed nations are willing to contribute for the change in less advanced economies is something which remains to be seen.

The Climate protection performance index of the countries vindicates the above conclusion, those countries who has shown highest achievements in climate protection are richer nations with higher per ca pita income.

And economically backward nations needs a helping hand both economically as well as technological know how.statistic_id266138_climate-change-performance-index_-achievements-by-country-2016

Industrial Revolution

With the  onset  of industry revolution was somewhere close to 1750 till 1840 , where new manufacturing process was in operation , since then mankind has invented new machines like steam engine , many more use of machines in the world of manufacturing  lead to increase in productivity , history has lauded this as one of finest achievement of human being .But since that period the co2 emission has grown to  un assumed proportions  is alarming

statistic_id264699_global-co2-emissions-1751-2013

Individual level participation is also key.

Leave the industrialization and other reasons, Are we as individuals are doing enough to play our role as a change agent in bringing down global temperature?Please find the below reasons and their share respondents.

We need to highlight countries like japan and Netherlands where people prefer cycle as their preferred mode of commutation .Time has come or time to  realize that we are living on verge of global climate change & pollution .every action of ours count more than  the previous one  , and we have identified the root cause of this problem, If we really want to protect this wonderful planet , we need to  do  some sacrifices for a better tomorrow , Otherwise in the  worst case scenario this blue planet would become the worst place to survive for our future generations to come.

statistic_id410971_environmentally-motivated-actions-taken-in-the-preceding-month-in-the-uk-in-2014