Before being an entrepreneur was the cool and hip thing to do, and before it was directly associated with being in the tech space, non-profits were being ran by individuals who had no idea what they were doing, but knew why they were doing it. Entrepreneurs are not restricted to the for-profit space.
In the years I have spent working with non-profits I have been able to interact with some of the most passionate, driven and hard-working individuals. Individuals who saw a need, saw it wasn’t being fulfilled and decided to do something about it. And there is one main difference – they didn’t start their entrepreneur journey with the idea of becoming rich. Their bottom lines were not money but purpose. And that is not an easy thing to commit yourself to in a world where cash is king.
It’s evident that there have been struggles in the non-profit world with the model of fundraising and that sometime the drive for money is too lax, however if anyone is looking for examples of entrepreneurs with grit, drive and resilience I would start looking at the local non-profits in your areas, because I promise you’ll find them.
It’s evident in non-profits (as it is in the for-profit world) that the groups that innovate win. They continue to attract more money, a stronger reputation and continue to grow. This stems from having a leader that is an entrepreneur. Someone who sees beyond the weeds, can envision a bigger picture and is keeping their end goal in mind.
We need to stop thinking of non-profit leaders as soft, ‘bleeding-heart’, push over executives and start seeing them for the fierce, die-hard entrepreneurial attitudes they have.
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