The Importance Of Personal Growth And Social Impact As Advocates For Business Success
Personal growth involves understanding yourself and exploring your highest potential. It means continuously asking yourself who you are, who you intend to become, and how you plan to become this person?
While this development starts very personal, it eventually radiates outward to touch the lives of others.
Personal growth allows you to be proactive, rather than passively waiting for good things to happen, you make them happen. Committing towards personal growth is the first step on the path towards sustainable social impact.
Most business owners hope to make a positive difference in the world, some do. However, the drive to build a company that has a direct social impact is one that requires the business owners to become socially conscious.
Before deciding on what type of entrepreneur you intend to become let’s explore the difference between an entrepreneur and a social entrepreneur and the qualities that all types of entrepreneurs must-have.
Entrepreneur vs social entrepreneur
Who is an entrepreneur?
An entrepreneur is an individual passionate enough to identify a problem, innovate on a solution, and stay open-minded to turn that idea into a business that makes a profit.
A social entrepreneur, on the other hand, channels his passion towards adopting a lifestyle aimed towards solving social problems, they could operate for-profit or non-profit business models, and they are primarily motivated to improve socio-economic well-being making a profit as means to achieving their goals.
Qualities of an entrepreneur
Business can be described as an art, some people have the inborn talent and others work to develop this skill, no matter which description best describes you, everyone benefits from continuous improvement.
Here are some of the qualities an entrepreneur should possess:
The first quality an entrepreneur should have is passion, which could also be described as motivation. No one can have a goal without having the passion to want to reach that goal. Passion motivates an entrepreneur to take on new tasks, learn new things, and overcome obstacles to reach that goal.
This character is essential for an entrepreneur since he’s the boss with the freedom of not being told what, when & how to achieve his objectives, he needs to be able to accomplish essential tasks whether he feels up to it or not to ensure his success.
Self-discipline means committing your thoughts, emotions, and actions towards generating a sense of responsibility for getting the job done.
3. Risk taking
Entrepreneurship is all about taking risks to achieve success, but not all risk-takers are successful entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs plan before taking risks, and understand which risks will be beneficial or harmful to the company or himself, they establish the rules of engagement and a plan B for the result of the risks.
4. Creative thinking
An entrepreneur always has loads of ideas constantly on their minds. This ability to think on diverse subject areas helps an entrepreneur stay open-minded and proactive towards creating innovative solutions or establishing different types of businesses uniquely and creatively.
This most basic quality is sometimes overlooked during the euphoria phase of wanting to become an entrepreneur, all entrepreneurs experience failures and challenges, persistence helps you pick yourself back up to keep moving towards your goals.
These qualities are vital for anyone interested in becoming and staying an entrepreneur, and you will agree with me that your personal growth is your essential tool towards achieving these qualities. let’s explore some catalysts for personal growth.
How to kick start your personal growth
Personal growth begins when you accept certain hard truths, the world has pressured us into believing we are required to invest all our time, resources, and talents into the pursuit of wealth- and while wealth is necessary as a means to survive, it’s easy to lose sight of the most important investment of all to commit to.
Getting ready to upgrade yourself to your 2.0 version involves first allowing yourself to see the truth in your flaws and then committing to becoming a better version of your genuine self.
- Work in yourself and not on yourself
Activity is often confused for progress, seeming constantly busy is misread for accomplishment or acceleration. I was guilty of this when I dabbled into the world of entrepreneurship 7 years ago, I felt this need to stay incessantly busy to prove to my parents and friends that I was making progress, and not admitting to myself that I was simply lost in the activity.
I had become an employee of my own life; slaving away, when all I needed to do was take a step back to analyze myself from the inside out; and see the kind of life that I wanted to live through my own eyes and not through the lenses of the public.
Once I did that, I realized I had nothing to prove to anyone but myself, so I set feasible goals for myself using the resources and time I was willing to allocate to achieving that goal as my metrics (none of those ‘I want a Bugatti by the time I’m 30 stories’), and without losing sight of the destination, I started enjoying the journey again.
2. Setbacks happen to everyone for a reason
A victim mentality is the mortal enemy of personal growth, it’s OK to ponder on why things happen, but dwelling on them for longer than necessary only ends up draining what little energy you have left that could be focused towards making things better.
To grow you must view these setbacks as having a reason, it shouldn’t run or define you, only fuel you.
As my sister once told me, “Even Jesus wept, it’s OK to feel sad but the goal is to keep moving.”
3. The perfect time to start is a mirage
Waiting is a stagnant action, which sometimes is the trigger for number 1. waiting for the stars to align a certain way in your life before you become kinder, or motivated is simply a convenient excuse that holds you back from taking action.
Social impact is the effect of the actions you take; personally or as an organization, however, social impact does not always have to be community service-oriented to make a difference, this goes beyond charity.
It’s simply about having some consideration for how what you do affects others, and the ultimate goal is to ensure that you leave a positive effect on the lives of others. The self-absorbed me-first ideology is more of a survival instinct, and personal growth should encourage you to understand that your little action has the potential to cause a ripple effect on people and society at large, so make your actions count for something.
In business the effects of social impact can be conveyed through service delivery or employment practices, today businesses are required to become mindful of how they impact society, this means that every aspiring entrepreneur or existing business owner should proactively consider caring about the welfare of the internal and external community around him.
Socially responsible business
To run a socially responsible business, your mindset needs to become socially aware as well, which is where your personal-growth imprints this ideology onto you as a lifestyle that helps you determine what kind of entrepreneur you intend to become.
Socially responsible businesses or founders may not put social impact first, but they realize the many benefits of being community-minded. By operating with a conscience and not just for profit.
As a founder, in my business, I emphasize the importance of social responsibility as an add-on to the work we do. We carry out a social experiment we call ‘Advocate4Change’ where we promote alternative social change using social interactions. We believe it’s only proper that we become advocates for the kind of change we seek from others, and we seek out random individuals to interact with them on topics that socially inform, encourage insightful conversation, and ultimately inspire others to reflect on a cause.
This provides not just brand exposure or awareness for us, but also allows us the opportunity to understand our external environment better, interact with our target audiences without doing constant product marketing, and we get to have some fun along the way doing something we are passionate about.
There are different forms of advocacy, although the primary goal of every advocacy is to make a change (however little) in your way, and not just for the people who pay for your services or help keep the lights on but to improve your personal growth and the chances of your business success as well.