Doing Good - While Walking the Line
As a social enterprise, ProMo-Cymru is always interested in learning how we can do good and be sustainable. We try to find the best way between enterprise and charity. This line between non-profit and for-profit companies is increasingly becoming blurred. We’ve done a quick round-up of four organisations from both categories that show how to walk the line while having a clear message and purpose, doing interesting things with new and old ideas:
Patagonia are world leaders when it comes to ethical business. The company initially started to manufacture climbing equipment and now sell a whole range of ethical clothing and sportswear. The company has three goals:
→ Build the Best Product.
→ Cause no Unnecessary harm.
→ Use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.
The clarity demonstrated in these goals is important for many companies who are striving to communicate their message to the public.
What is impressive is how Patagonia try to realise their goals through their activities, services and employee schemes.
Patagonia released a counterintuitive advert campaign on ‘Black Friday’ called ‘Don’t buy this jacket’. Whilst others were heavily promoting their product Patagonia was able to raise brand awareness through encouraging people to consider over-consumption of goods and not to buy their products on the day.
riversimple is a Welsh business, their goal: ‘To pursue, systematically, the elimination of the environmental impact of personal transport’.
riversimple sells and promotes a hydrogen fueled car to meet this aim. What makes their car different to all others, however, is that instead of starting with the car design they started by designing the fuel cell and built the car around it. The fuel cell is called the Rasa and is a nod to the blank sheet of paper Tabula Rasa meaning ‘clean slate’ in Latin.
The company is a great example of how to succeed by doing something your own way rather copying others. For more info on the company visit their site.
Lemonade are trying to shake up the insurance world through using artificial intelligence (AI) to pay out claims and donating any remaining funds to non-profits causes. They offer an attractive message to their target audience and have already entered the record books for paying out a claim in 3 seconds.
The company is able to operate at a lower cost than its rivals through the use of AI. This does throw up a lot of questions around automation and replacing jobs but it remains an interesting company to watch and a possible future model for how we buy insurance. The company don’t trade in the UK but for more information on what they do, visit their website.
Charity: Water have a beautifully simple message ‘ Charity:Water is a non-profit organisation bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing countries’.
The charity has only been in existence for a few years but has grown dramatically and raised a substantial amount of funds for water projects. In a time where there has been a decrease of public trust in charities, the organisation has been able to attract substantial public support by having clear message and purpose. If you work for a charity or are looking how to convey a message, take a look at their website.
What can we learn?
No matter how you walk the line, message and purpose define you.