Business Planning

What is a Social Enterprise?

Social enterprises are becoming more popular as both entrepreneurs and investors are increasingly interested in creating a positive social impact through business. But it can be difficult to know if a business idea is best thought of as a social enterprise or not. In some countries, like the UK, there are clear legal designations for social enterprises. In the United States, the designations are less clear and a social enterprise is usually set up as a for-profit or nonprofit entity.  

Well-known social enterprises include Goodwill Industries, TOMs shoes, and Ben & Jerrys.

What is social entrepreneurship?

Social entrepreneurship is any business that is focused on social impact over profit. Watch the following video to learn more:

What are some examples of social enterprises?

Many brands and companies are interested in making a positive social impact. However, for some, it’s more of an afterthought and the main focus is profit. What sets a social entrepreneur apart from other business owners is that they are as interested, if not more interested in impact as they are in profit.


What are some of the characteristics of a social entrepreneur?

Not everyone is cut out to be a social entrepreneur and there’s no one type of business or entrepreneur that is right for it. However, social entrepreneurs do tend to share some common skills and traits. Watch the video to learn more.

Ask a mentor to help you as you start your social enterprise and determine what you'll need to operate as one. Starting a social enterprise can be both fulfilling and profitable. Sign up at Sky’s the Limit to get access to business mentors, tools and other support you need.