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Forum - Ron Schultz Column - E:CO Issue Vol. 14 No. 4 2012 pp. 154-157
 

Adjacent Opportunities:
Building a Healthy Economy

Ron Schultz
Entrepreneurs4Change, US

I hate being reminded that I’m older than I feel. My friend and colleague, Pat Conaty, did just that recently when I broached the topic of Building Healthy Economies with him. Pat is a brilliant economic social innovator, author, and a person who puts his actions where his ideas are. As he explained “The problem is that just as folks like you and me hit late life (Late life? Ouch) and then have a certain epiphany: we, like previous generations of elders, in our existential quest for hallowed truth, end up rediscovering the wisdom underlying the ancient co- operative wheel of social and economic democracy.” He goes on to describe that the positions that he and his coauthor Mike Lewis make in their new book, The Resilience Imperative, is that “the social economy and social enterprise sec- tor is not new. Sadly the stone rolls back down the hill. We need to sort this and push mightily to the top. How to mobilize and achieve this non-violently is the question.”

OK, I’m older than I feel and my drive to build healthy economies is nothing new. But as Conaty, who actually is 9 days older than I am, goes on to point out “the social economy struggle is as old as the hills, with deep roots in the peaceful struggle of Gerard Winstanley and the Diggers to persuade Cromwell in 1650 to allow commonwealth to be developed by stewarding land for community bene- fit. The Commonwealth was not fulfilled by Cromwell, despite aspirations by the Levellers and the Diggers for economic democracy. Ivan Illich talked brilliantly in his little books about the endless struggle of the vernacular culture against the Romans (in all their ancient and modern costumes).” Well, I’m not that old.

Download the complete text in PDF: Adjacent Opportunities: Building a Healthy Economy

 

Review - Jeffrey Hollender reviews "Creating Good Work".
 


"Social entrepreneurs are committed to a goal that neither our government nor big business has been willing to take on—the building of an enlightened society. It’s the job of these special people who want to leave the world a better place for those who have yet to be born. The book provides practical, hard-won advice for how prospective and even in-the-trenches social entrepreneurs can do just that. The book is broken down into sections that focus on theory, application and best practices—laying out where we’ve come from, what we believe in, and what we need to know to go forward".

Read the Full review at JeffreyHollender.com...

 

Forum - Ron Schultz Column - E:CO Issue Vol. 14 No. 3 2012
 

Adjacent Opportunities:
The Emergent Choice

Ron Schultz
Entrepreneurs4Change, US

Is this the right decision for now? Waiting for a direction to emerge when im- mediate action is required is not just about patience in the face of mounting pressure, it’s about being observant. It’s the willingness to see. Now, that may sound a little funny. How can we avoid seeing? It’s amazing how well-framed our filters are to keep out what appears extraneous. But perhaps in engaging the extraneous what emerges is a perception that extends the boundaries of our normal vision, and allows something never before considered to enter the picture and lead the way.

I recently attended the Social Enterprise Alliance Regional Conference in Los An- geles, and I heard a lot of talk about young people and their growing desire to find meaningful and purposeful work. It was a theme that came up in many of the sessions I intended. Or at least it was something for which I was listen- ing. When I asked Adlai Wertman, USC Marshall School of Business—Society and Business Lab, what percentage of students he thought were leaning in this di- rection, the answer was suddenly qualified. What happens, he explained, is that when corporate recruiters come on campus and begin offering large signing bo- nuses amidst the specter of $10,000s and perhaps $100,000s of student loans, a palpable reality emerges, and in that instance, finding work that is meaningful and purposeful becomes less of a defining quality.

Download the complete text in PDF: Adjacent Opportunities: The Emergent Choice

9/1/12 - E4C Annouces Next Free Entrepreneurs Orientation Event
 

Are You Ready to Start a Business?
A Creating Good Work Entrepreneur Orientation Event

Entrepreneurs4Change and VAMBOA.org (Veteran and Military Business Owners Association) would like to invite you to a free Entrepreneurs Orientation Event - Are You Ready to Start a Business? 

If you’ve always thought about starting a business, or if you have a business idea you’ve always wanted to launch, or if you’ve already begun a new business venture that needs help, join us for our free introductory entrepreneurial session.

The event will be held on Tuesday, September 11th, from 2-4:00 PM at Ventura County Community Foundation, United Way Community Room, 1317 Del Norte Road Suite 150 Camarillo, CA

This 2-hour introductory event is specifically for those entrepreneurs who are:
1. Launching a new business effort
2. In need of the education and training to start a business
3. In need of access to the capital to make it happen.

If you’re starting a business or if you have a business idea you’ve always dreamed about putting into action, join us on September 11th and see if this is the opportunity you’ve been looking for.  The actual Creating Good Work Entrepreneurial Workshop, again free to all Vets, will be held the last week in September.

Space is very limited. RSVP, today at info@E4C.net.

The Orientation Meeting is free to all respondents and open to all Veteran entrepreneurs by this invitation only.


Forum - Ron Schultz Column - E:CO Issue Vol. 14 No. 2 2012
 

Adjacent Opportunities:
Interacting Ideas

Ron Schultz
Entrepreneurs4Change, US

Over the years, this column has given me a tremendous opportunity to ex- plore emergence and organization within a variety of different organiza- tions.  Many of them have been in the realm of social entrepreneurship and many of those dealt with my trials and tribulations around bringing my own social entrepreneurial effort, Entrepreneurs4Change, to life.  During the last year, I have had the great pleasure of producing a book that will be coming out in January/February, 2013 from Palgrave Macmillan. It’s called, Creating Good Work: The World’s Leading Social Entrepreneurs Help You Build a Healthy Economy.  And true to its title, it does feature some of the world’s leading social entrepreneurs. But I’m not taking the space here to write about it for purely merchandising reasons.  What occurred during the production of this book was incredibly emergent and I think worth sharing.

In asking these 20 odd folks to contribute to this book, and some of them, I must say, were very odd, something rather emergent happened. While there was no real interaction among the various contributors, what was produced out of the interaction of their thoughts on this topic, within the volume as a whole, I think, will reshape the thinking that guides the extraordinary efforts people are making to build better social enterprises.

Download the complete text in PDF: Adjacent Opportunities: Interacting Ideas



6/18/12 - ENTREPRENEURS4CHANGE LAUNCHES ITS I NEED A PATRON PROGRAM
  Do you see yourself joining the historic ranks of the Medicis, Rockefellers, or Gates?

Perhaps your wealth is not quite, yet, as vast, but your inspiration is still strong and motivating you to do what you can to benefit others. Maybe you have always envisioned yourself as being a patron to those who might have a new way to change the world for the better, or an innovation, or perhaps simply providing a service with which you resonate.
   
Becoming an E4C Patron is a simple way to donate what you can to help one of our military veteran entrepreneurs, social entrepreneurs or green business owners.  You can also be an E4C Patron and support the work we’re doing here at E4C. The truth is, we can use all the help we can get.  

Our patrons will each receive their own page on our web site where, if they like, they can provide their Story of Patronage – who you are, what motivated you to participate in this program, and the kinds of enterprises that interest you. Patrons will also have the choice of listing those entrepreneurs they are currently supporting on their pages. Any Patron always has the choice to remain anonymous.

Being a Patron does not require a large donation. Each entrepreneur who participates in the E4C I NEED A PATRON program will establish a sum they need to operate their enterprise and are looking to find from a patron. Once that figure has accrued, the patronage will be released.  So in this fashion, you are free to donate whatever you feel you can afford to benefit these entrepreneurs.

As a Patron, you will be entitled to regular updates from those entrepreneurs you choose to support. There is no repayment of these funds. Like all patronage, they are a charitable contribution, unless the organization is a 501c3, but a gift to the entrepreneur to realize his or her enterprise dream.

There will be two kinds of entrepreneurs listed on the E4C I NEED A PATRON SITE, those educated and endorsed by E4C and those who come to E4C and have been vetted by E4C. 

It will be up to the Patron to read and watch the video materials provided by the entrepreneur in making their patronage decision. E4C endorsees will all have completed the E4C Entrepreneurial Program. All others seeking patrons will be vetted  to make sure they meet the criteria for joining the site, but E4C can take no responsibility for those organizations seeking Patronage who have not gone through our program.
 
5% from each successful patronage donation will be applied to administrative costs. Once accrued, 95% of all donations will go directly to the entrepreneur.

We look forward to your Patronage and hope you will be able to generously help our entrepreneurs build their businesses and rebuild their lives.


5/21/12 - E4C AND KIVA JOIN IN PILOT PROJECT TO HELP FUND E4C EDUCATED ENTREPRENEURS
 
Entrepreneurs4Change and Kiva.org have partnered in a pilot project called Kiva Zip, bringing access to funding to those E4C entrepreneurs who have completed the E4C entrepreneurial program. E4C is proud that our entrepreneurs were the first southern California participants in this program. They worked hard to get where they are and by completing the work we have asked of them, they are now part of a very special Kiva funding program pilot. 

We value our connection with Kiva and our Green and Social entrepreneurs as well as the Military Veterans we have been educating over the past few months. This is why E4C is doing what it does: to help hardworking and deserving enterprises, organizations and individuals realize their goals to improve their lives, build businesses and rebuild the economy in which they live.

Congratulations to our first five Kiva endorsees: Tina Hovesepian and Cardboardigami, Rashunda Rene and Tamara Johnson, CUSP, Stephen Bullard, Ecobuilt Systems,  Hanina Stettin, RentFoodBroke and Rob Marshall, Vet D-Build. If you are interested in helping support these and other E4C entrepreneurs who will be taking part in this special Kiva program, you can register to do so at http://zip.kiva.org

Visit these and all our entrepreneurs at http://www.e4c.net/entrepreneurs.html. And if so inspired by the remarkable work they are doing, you can become an E4C Patron and donate directly to them the E4C web site, as well. 


3/9/12 - Orientation Event Announced
 

Are You Ready to Start a Business? A Creating Good Work Entrepreneur Orientation Event

Entrepreneurs4Change  and Oxnard Workforce Services, EDD  would like to invite you to a free Entrepreneurs Orientation Event - Are You Ready to Start a Business? This is an introductory program for the Creating Good Work Entrepreneurial Workshop – also free to Veterans.If you’ve always thought about starting a business, or if you have a business idea you’ve always wanted to launch, or if you’ve already begun a new business venture that needs help, join us for our free introductory entrepreneurial session.

The event will be held on Wednesday, March 21st, from 2-4:00 PM at the Oxnard Workforce Services, EDD Office at 635 South Ventura Rd., Oxnard, CA 93030.

This 2-hour introductory event is specifically for those entrepreneurs who are:

  • Launching a new business effort
  • In need of the education and training to start a business
  • In need of access to the capital to make it happen.

If you’re starting a business or if you have a business idea you’ve always dreamed about putting into action, join us on March 21st and see if this is the opportunity you’ve been looking for.  The actual 5-session Creating Good Work Entrepreneurial Workshop, introduced by this orientation, is, again, free to all Vets. The workshop will be held in April. Details of this workshop will be outlined at the event.

Space is very limited for this orientation. RSVP, today at info@lending4change.com.

The Orientation Meeting is free to all respondents and open to all Veteran entrepreneurs by invitation.

 

Dublin Ireland - First International E4C Workshop!
 

Our program in Dublin, Ireland, engaged entrepreneurs and trainers from five separate organizations: SICCDA (South Inner City Community Development Assocation), JobeCare, The National Travelers Money Advisory Board, Dublin Simon and the South West Wexford Community Development Program.

In addition to these sponsoring organizations, we have also partnered with Social Entrepreneurs, Ireland, Business in the Community, Ireland and Inner City Enterprise, with special assistance from a select core of faculty from Trinity College, Dublin.

 

Forum - Ron Schultz Column - E:CO Issue Vol. 13 Nos. 1-2 2011 pp. 167-171
 

Adjacent Opportunities:
Community Economic Action

Ron Schultz
Lending4Change, US

Creating community is difficult under the best of motivated conditions. Activating community to actually accomplish an aligned goal is something else entirely. Just ask any currently elected official about the intractable thinking of their compatriots and we can see where the problems invariably arise. But just because there are some over ego-fed politicians foraging through the public coffers, doesn’t mean everyone operating in the world of community is acting likewise. Nor does it mean that there aren’t viable ways of assembling community to actually get something done that will benefit everyone and not
just the most powerful and greedy. (A social comment, possibly, but it is certainly one that would be hard to argue against).

A few years ago, I introduced within this column the notion of Community Social Performance, in which financial institutions, corporations, universities/colleges, non-profits, government agencies and local community groups would work to- gether, utilizing the resource of their expertise and wisdom to solve social issues together. In building this community and bringing them all to the table, we create an interactive dialogue out of which something “new and now” (innovative) might emerge. Solving social issues with the same thinking that got us there... well we all know the adage, and by doing so we do nothing more than maintain and sustain those within our communities who are struggling rather than doing something innovative to shift the intransigence.

It was out of this notion of Community Social Performance that we developed what has become the neighbor-to-neighbor loan-guarantee process, which is at the heart of our micro-finance/micro-enterprise program, Lending4Change.

Download the complete text in PDF: Adjacent Opportunities: Community Economic Action

 

Veterans Program - First Graduating Class!
 

At our recent Veteran’s program, our partners included Junior Achievement of Southern California, the Valley Economic Alliance, the Valley Economic Development Center, The Army National Guard, the Sepulveda Vet Center, the California Employment Development Departments, Canoga Park and the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Association.

 

Forum - Ron Schultz Column - E:CO Issue Vol. 13 No. 4 2011 pp. 84-86
 

Adjacent Opportunities:
Causal Clouds And Sudden Brainstorms

Ron Schultz
Entrepreneurs4Change, US

You and I interact and something emerges out of that interaction that is greater than the sum of our two parts. We might call that a simple emergent interaction. And that perception might be accepted as true except for one slight little addendum: to get to this point of connection, we both have led lives that have been anything but simple. Looking back, since we can only see this looking back, we bring to each moment in which we encounter another, our own personal causal chain of experience that informs, shapes and influences every next step we take. If you don’t think that’s a complex series of interactions, consider that it takes approximately 20,000 neuron interactions for a thought to emerge into consciousness and then think of all the thoughts that arise when you first meet that someone special. I guess love ain’t so simple.

Like it or not, we operate within a vast array cloud of interactions with an equal array of nonlinear connections. Every thought we have, every organization we work with, every time we walk through a mall, this causal cloud forms and re- forms our engagements with each other, as well as our making choices to avoid each other... for example the homeless person you might have walked around this morning. Now there are some people who might refer to this as a vast net- work of interactions, and I admit, I was once one of those. But it seems human interaction are not as neat as a network. As my friend and colleague Michael Lissack will tell you, what we are describing here is not so much a network, but an artwork. And true to that description, we could easily describe our encounters together as a creative and emergent process that reflects the world we see before us and the world we have experienced in the past.

Download the complete text in PDF: Adjacent Opportunities: Causal Clouds And Sudden Brainstorms

 

LA Green and Social Business Entrepreneurs Graduate!
 

Our Green and Social Business Entrepreneurial Workshop benefited through the sponsorship and association of the USC Credit Union, The Episcopal Credit Union, Pacoima Development Credit Union, Green Business Networking, HubLA, the University of Southern California, and the Valley Green Team.

 

Forum - Ron Schultz Column - E:CO Issue Vol. 11 No. 4 2009 pp. 87-88
 

Adjacent Opportunities:
Cultivating the Emergent Constituency

Ron Schultz
The Center for Social Profit Leadership, US

Engaging an audience to buy-in to what is being offered has been the goal of advertisers, scientists, salespeople, politicians, hate mongers, social activists, professors, all the world’s religions and entrepreneurs trying to fill every enterprising nook they might possibly exploit, to name just a few. And to go along with those selling their ideas and products, there are a myriad of experts who want to sell what they know about how to make that sale.


In my test bed for ‘getting the word out’ known as the International Social Action Film Festival, I have watched hours of films about social activists, charities and the work of non-profits and NGOs. They share a number of common issues. First, the majority have no idea how to tell a compelling story about social
change, and second they have little notion of the constituency required to develop an audience that will support them. The prevailing perception is that everyone will want to know. But when engaged in engaging others, “All the World is Not a Stage.” If you think your audience is everyone, you may find yourself sitting alone.


The comedian, Steven Wright, once made the observation, “I don’t want everything. Where would I put it?” And as we begin to look at how to engage the emergent process of developing an audience for our ideas, we have to start looking at the fact that what we think is not necessarily for everyone. Because,
of course, if everyone showed up, where would we put them?

Download the complete text in PDF: Adjacent Opportunities: Cultivating the Emergent Constituency

 

 

 

 

 

 
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