Asking this fundamental question and answering it in one simple sentence is a good test to establish the longevity of your enterprise. Fully subscribed purpose acts as a binding force for all stakeholders and drives innovation necessary for sustainability.
If a social enterprise is born through a passing mind wave, a tentative desire to experiment or some other quest for recognition etc., will mostly fail to exist beyond the promoter or their ability to continue to keep the momentum. Patronage will reduce over time as well. Exception is when the enterprise solidifies its purpose – irrespective of source/trigger of its origin.
Though it is an accepted regime to see business enterprises fail routinely, letting social enterprises fail will have an irreversible effect on the society/target it is intended to support. Social Entrepreneurs should be aware of this serious responsibility they are choosing to shoulder and plan the essential support system for the same. As a first step, do visit the purpose of your social enterprise and what are you doing to keep it relevant all the time…
Look at some of the (purpose) –reasons why successful social enterprises exist! – a driving force behind their journey!
“to eliminate needless blindness” – Aravind Eye Care System
“A dream to making quality healthcare accessible to the masses worldwide”- Narayana Hrudayalaya Hospitals
“to enhance the quality of life of underserved households and livelihoods through sustainable energy solutions and services” – selco-india
“Sustainable Communities –connecting communities village by village” – Drishtee
“to stop the exploitation by middlemen” – Amul