Week 8 - Organization Building
Throughout the class thus far, the focus has been on analyzing many of the
different components necessary to a social enterprise. The focus of this
class is on analyzing the beginning stages of an organization - with a keen
eye on social enterprises - and how the organization grows. This class and
the next class - What Makes a Social Entrepreneur? - will round out the
class by tying everything together.
Housekeeping - Anything
that's necessary to take care of beforehand.Ê(10 min).
Leadership - The
most important element to building an organization. The leader sets the
tone for the rest of the organization and without strong leadership from
the top, an organization is likely to misstep or even fail in solving
its problem. What are some key characteristics of great leaders? What
does a great leader need to do? How do leaders handle failure? This
article goes into much more
detail about the qualities and styles of leadership [20 min]
Brainstorming is a key component for an organization to make decisions,
think about growth strategies, come up with solutions to problems based
on its mission statement, coming up with the mission statement, etc.
This discussion should focus on the benefits of brainstorming, and
should have a mini brainstorming session to discuss what works and
doesn't work in an organization. Use this
article as a starting point
for brainstorming [20 min].
Business Plans -
Many people disagree about whether or not a business plan is extremely
valuable or a complete waste of time. Dwight D. Eisenhower said it best
in that "Plans are nothing; planning is everything." This is true with
business plans in that they help develop a blueprint of what the
organization ought to look like and detail many of the assumptions,
risks, and roadmap for the organization. Discussion should focus around
what a good business plan involves. This
article is a great starting
point [20 min].
Team Building - At
some point, an organization must grow beyond the small team of founders
to include other people. Who should the organization pick? What are the
qualities of a great team? This
article discusses what a
great team looks like as well as discusses some of the reasons why teams
fail [20 min].
Partnerships deserve specific attention because they are especially
critical for social enterprises. Many times there are multiple
organizations acting in tangentially related ways, and its a common
practice for social entrepreneurs to leverage other enterprises' core
competencies to meet some of the organization's needs. What are critical
components to successful partnerships? How does an organization choose
potential partners? This
article provides a primer for what makes effective partnerships [20
Wrap Up - How do all
of these qualities relate to the previous classes? Any themes that can
be discussed? Ê[10 min]
Each student should do a reflection on their personal motivations and
whether or not they would consider themselves a social entrepreneur. Do
you want to be the leader? Would you rather be the coordinator behind
the leader, managing all of the details? What motivates you to take a
leadership position? How do you lead? This assignment should be a
paragraph or two exploring these questions and quite personal in nature.
Each student should write another 1-2 paragraph description of a social
entrepreneur of their choosing. The writings should discuss the personal
characteristics and qualities of the individual, such as personality,
temperament, family life, work habits, etc.
No readings for next week.
Next week will be the final class and is a discussion of what makes a
social entrepreneur. What are some of their personal qualities? What are
some themes that have been discussed throughout the class? These
questions and many others will be explored in this class.