wetting his feet deep in both the worlds of pure for-profit and for-profit social enterprise Madan Padaki feels the difference is not as much as it is made out to be. He now firmly believes that all businesses are social businesses – if they are not, can they be anti-social businesses? Henry Ford said any business that makes only money is a poor business
Speaking at Trust Box Debut Edition organized by Tata Trusts early July 2016, he said for philanthropy to have maximum impact, it needs an entrepreneurial mindset. He calls people who do
that as philantropreurs. Madan ran Meritrac which was acquired by Manipal Education. In 2013, he started Head Held High – a venture to make rural youth employable. He also runs a 200 people e-commerce company.
Just like a business, a social organization requires an innovator’s risk mindset if it is to succeed. And for it to scale it needs entrepreneurial thinking. For both to happen people have to create platforms, get on the digital wave to scale and build strong collaborative networks. Without these facets, no entity of whatever shade can succeed. And talent being scare, amidst a sea of unemployed people, both have to look good to attract the right people.
Madan’s central point was to get profit-only entrepreneurs appreciate people in the social sector as hardworking and imaginative as they are. Such an appreciation may help them to drive their businesses with greater social nuance. And those working in NGOs, his message was that they start shedding the ‘jholawallah’ or the unkempt looks and put on the lens of an entrepreneur. There’s a lot both can learn from one another.
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