Become A Social Entrepreneur

Business is generally perceived to be hard-nosed, totally profit-driven and calculating, but sometimes there is a middle ground-one that benefits everyone involved. Take Mirakle Couriers, based in Mumbai India.

As the name suggests, the company offer a pick up and drop off service in Mumbia. What isn’t obvious though is that the company only employ deaf workers. India has one of the largest deaf populations in the world, with around 6% of the population affected. Many find it difficult to find work. Mirakle Couriers are able to provide that work.

The company founder is a former investment banker who insists that the company is a commercial operation rather than a charity, and that the social element is simply embedded in the commercial operation. In any event, it seems to work and the company has grown rapidly since its 2008 launch.

So from the companies standpoint, is there an advantage to solely employing workers who have a disability? There could be several. Prospective customers could be impressed with the companies social element, and be therefore more likely to use them. It’s something unusual, and is therefore likely to be of immerse PR valve. And the workers themselves-having experienced difficulty finding work elsewhere-are likely to be hard working and loyal.

It seems like a win-win situation, and one which could be copied elsewhere. Are there European laws against positively discriminating in favour of people with disabilities in the workplace? I’d like to think not, but don’t know, so that would need looking into. But it seems like an idea with potential.

Motivational Quote Of The Day

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“A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.”

Mahatma Ghandi

Alternative Quote Of The Day

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“A team effort is a lot of people doing what I say.”

Michael Winner

Upcycling Opportunity

I was reading about a business run by Scott Hamlin in Portland Oregon, and wondered how many other people might be able to cash in on something like this.

Hamlin’s company, Loop works buys up end-of-line, unwanted fabric from warehouses in Asia which is destined for landfill or the incinerator. It then turns it into shirts, skirts, laptop sleeves and backpacks. The company is very much for profit, but has a strong environmental ethos.

Any enterprise that has a positive environmental impact will be well received by prospective customers and the media. Upcycling (converting waste materials or useless products into new materials or products of better quality) is environmentally friendly and can be highly profitable if done well.

Are there upcycling opportunities in your sphere of expertise? Do you know of any waste materials that could form the basis of a new upcycling opportunity?

Today’s National Day

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