In the high tech arena, accelerators offer coaching, capital injections, and workspace to help entrepreneurs realize the full potential of their ideas while investors identify the most promising businesses. In recent years, the social sector has embraced and adapted this approach to help businesses with a social purpose increase their impact. There are now hundreds of socially-focused accelerator programs serving different sub-sectors within the social impact realm and yet, no accelerator exists to support employment social enterprises.
In keeping with REDF’s history of applying proven business practices to solving complex social issues, we are thrilled to announce the SE4Jobs Accelerator—a unique program for social enterprise leaders that provides specialized curriculum and the opportunity to collaborate with and be inspired by your peers from around the country.
After conducting extensive practitioner interviews and surveying the SE4JOBS network, REDF identified an unfilled need in the sector. Big picture, we heard that:
• People on the ground who are running social enterprises told us how valuable it would be to have a dedicated space and time to meet with, and learn from, their colleagues in the field.
• Social enterprise practitioners come to this work from a wide variety of backgrounds. Many want to strengthen their business acumen and in a way that is customized for the social enterprise model.
The main goals of the SE4Jobs Accelerator are to meet these needs through cohort-based programming; participants will attend in-person sessions in three different cities (San Francisco, New Orleans and Baltimore) and participate in virtual, topic-specific sessions. Participants will come away with an increased understanding of core business principles and gain the skills to:
• Better diagnose and overcome organizational challenges by applying a “growth mindset” approach
• Improve strategic thinking and planning skills
• More effectively pitch for funding
• Better identify and test assumptions
• Create a vision of impact to better align and execute a strategy
• Decrease “burn-out”
• Expand both local and national professional networks
The launch of this program deepens REDF’s commitment to building leaders, social enterprises and in turn, the social enterprise field at large. We’re excited to have the opportunity to bring together a group of passionate, talented, and committed social enterprise leaders to create change that is broader, deeper, and more sustainable than any one of us can effect on our own.
More detail and links to apply are available here. If you have questions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. And to all the fans of REDF’s work, we’d love your help in spreading the word!