SSE Yorkshire graduation video

SSE Yorkshire + Humber assembled a great group of social entrepreneurs for their first programme. Unfortunately I couldn't make their graduation a few weeks back, but here's a great video by one of the new SSE Fellows, Justine Gaubert, which does as good a summary of SSE's approach from a participant's perspective as I've seen. Enjoy.

SSE Yorkshire promo graduation from Justine Gaubert on Vimeo.

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Social enterprise and entrepreneurship links from August

Card2028-376x230 Lots to do, lots to read, lots more to do….

My last post-holiday round-up seemed to go down well, so thought I'd do the same for August as I did for July. No particular rationale, just stuff I've found interesting or think might be relevant. Hope it is. Enjoy:

– The big hairy article of the month was in the Economist (I assume by Matthew Bishop), titled "Social innovation: let's hear those ideas" which covers how the US and UK governments are seeking to encourage social innovation and social entrepreneurship. Also includes cogent round-up of Big Society agenda to date.

– If you're interested in working out what the hell is happening with Local Enterprise Partnerships (*entire readership switches blogs*), then this round-up is the best place STILL to do so.

– Some interesting stuff written about the Big Society. Dai Powell of HCT's ("The clock is ticking on the Big Society") and Geoff Mulgan of Young Foundation's ("Can the Big Society be more than a slogan?") stood out for me, along with Craig Dearden-Phillips call for a constructive, engaged response See for more

Twenty by Twenty: twenty essays on future of social enterprise, charity et al by good (as well as big) names

– Great social media decision-making guide for social entrepreneurs / non-profits from US experts Idealware

– Good piece in the New York Times about a social entrepreneur (don't be put off by the title): What Exactly Is A Social Entrepreneur?

Giving is no longer a government preserve: interesting piece in the Telegraph touching on social entrepreneurship + big society

Amanda Jones of RedButtonDesign in Director magazine on the trials and tribulations of raising funding/investment as a social enterprise

– Nice (Canadian) round-up of summer reading for social entrepreneurs which of course you can buy in the SSE bookstore

Social enterprise start-up: 3 lessons to learn….by Involver

Worry isn't work: Don't be Anxious! wise words from Dan Pallotta in Harvard Business Review; now if I could just follow his advice…

– Happy tale of a women's social enterprise (minicabs for women only) struggling, thriving and becoming the subject of a BBC comedy show

Ten tips on elevator pitches; I think the Brits aren't as good at this stuff (myself included); I think we do escalator pitches….so will try and read 5 lessons from 150 start-up pitches as well

Merger advice for small and medium orgs + collaboration advice from Bassac and others….

– ….and, for balance, an argument on DSC against merger: Total efficiency is the enemy of freedom

Pollgate: the results of the storm in our own particular UK #socent teacup; but gratifying nonetheless!

Freeing the Social Entrepreneur: a piece in Stanford Social Innovation Review well worth reading, covering founder syndrome, leadership and much more

– Great video on the Homeless World Cup and its impact: warms the cockles and all that

The Social Intrapreneur: a field guide for corporate changemakers…. ; well, those MBA-ers had to come up with something :0)

– Alex Nicholls says Social Entrepreneurship Is Growing Up on Which I would heartily endorse. So I'll end with the good professor's words. Cheers:

”We're moving into a period of much more critical analysis of social entrepreneurship. We've ridden a wave of consensus; we're all hugging each other and patting ourselves on the back. There's been lots of money pouring into this and support from governments. I think all that's changing. We've had an economic calamity, governments are looking at austerity, foundations are pulling back, the media and others are getting more critical. I think we're going to have a critical decade for social entrepreneurship, and that's great. It's high time we looked at the stuff that's useful and does have impact and the stuff that has no impact at all, and I think we're going to have a big reality check. The hero-worshiping, self-congratulatory period's over. I don't see that as a challenge; I see it as a sign that we're growing up.”

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Partnerships 2: should social enterprises date, co-habit or marry?

Goteam Typically, two days after I write a long post about partnership (and thanks for those who've commented, tweeted etc positively), a great podcast comes up on my commute in to work on….partnership. So I'll keep this brief: this podcast, Strategic Restructuring by David La Piana, is brilliant. On mergers, on partnerships (of different types), on what role funders and practitioners can play, and much much more. Some quick highlights:

– great comparison of non-profit partnerships to relationships: know whether you are dating, living together, or getting married for ever…

– effortless demolition of the "there are too many charities and social enterprises" argument

– realism on mergers: they normally don't save money, culture is most important, it needs to start with mission, economies of scale (or lack of therein) etc, etc

Highly, highly recommended for social entrepreneurs, funders, policymakers and all in the sector (+ check out all the various materials at the bottom of the page for more). I've also added it to our list of recommended podcasts, and you can find more sense-making stuff from David La Piana at

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Social enterprise + entrepreneurship links from July

AlarmclocktimeCurrently, on my return to work, I am somewhere between B and C in the image to the left. Cleared the inbox (almost) yesterday, and now catching up on everything that's happened since I've been away.

To which the short answer is "far too much to put in one post". So I'm taking the easy / sensible way out, and posting up a load of the most interesting and relevant links during the last month that have passed through the inbox / twitter / etc Hopefully they are for you too.

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Social enterprise + social entrepreneur links of the week (June 2nd)

DoubthesitationEnjoyed this graph to the left, as it summed up either a) why social entrepreneurs are often prone to action (it removes doubt!) and b) how those waiting for potential cuts might feel as that wait continues….and in the interests of not hesitating here any longer, on with the round-up:

– First up, speaking of cuts, the Future Jobs Fund was first to go, realistically being much to early to decide whether it was a success or a failure; Peter Holbrook (of Social Enterprise Coalition) and Allison Ogden-Newton (of Social Enterprise London) both came out in strong defence of FJF on their blogs.

– The Big Society debates continue on twitter + blogs + pubs. Best recent contributions? I enjoyed Nat Wei's seabed-coral reef – fish analogy, Andy Westwood's take + constructive critique from the left, and Adil Abrar's practitioner's perspective . I also found it useful to get an outsider's view of it all, so check out Canadian social entrepreneur Al Etmanski on what he makes of all this (a "fork in the road worth watching")

– Scale seems to have been a theme this week as well. Whether it's Nat Whittemore writing about the lack of ambition in social entrepreneurs (prompting some debate in the comments!), Martin Brookes of ew Philanthropy Capital arguing for scaling up evidence-based solutions, not scaling out individual involvement, or Sally Osberg (of Skoll Foundation) writing on how social entrepreneurs can punch above their weight

– There was a good piece in the Guardian about CICs being used as a vehicle for water power investment

– Also in the Guardian, a piece on Lambeth Council (which we now have to follow with "The John Lewis Council" :0) ) which attracted some interesting and very informed comments

– Karl Wilding over at NCVO gave the best view so far of how the cuts might affect this sector

– There was much delight (though I'm not completely sure why) that the words "social enterprise" came out of the Queen's mouth

Grameen Bank is coming to Glasgow.

– Some interesting leadership moves as Social Enterprise Ambassadors Maria Donoghue-Mills and Matt Stevenson-Dodd both got new jobs at SCA and Street League respectively

– And on a final SSE note, there is now a list of all the SSE students / Fellows on Twitter (let me know if I've missed anyone….), and two SSE Liverpool students are up for Liverpool Woman of the Year. Please cast your votes for Claire Morgans or Pauline Pendleton, and congrats to both on the nominations.

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