I've been saying it to anyone who will listen: the current economic crisis will change the way in which we do business - for ever.
But I'm certainly not the first to notice the fundamental societal shifts that are currently shaking up our lives. The signs have been there for all to notice: our unbalanced lifestyles that have lead to countless broken families and stress-related afflictions, the youth of today being dubbed the "work-to-live, not live-to-work generation" or the almost irreversible damage our "Me-myself-and-I" globalized consumerism has caused over the past few decades. Let's be honest: how much longer did we think this excessive and self-obsessed way of living could last?
How will these shifts impact the way we live and do business? Fundamentally, if you ask me.
We will need to (re)find a balance between that has been lost for many decades.
What a refreshing, inspiring discovery it was when I came upon Striding Out's "Future 100" list this morning. The Future 100 list is a compilation of talented young entrepreneurs aged 18-35 who demonstrate entrepreneurial flair and innovation in progressing a responsible business venture. Responsible business is defined as one which demonstrates a balance between economic, environmental and social goals to achieve ultimate business success.
"The future of our world is in the hands of individuals who are committed to generating commercial and ethical returns. Challenging economic times can offer opportunities to question the way we operate as both a business community and a society. We are looking for the 'Future 100' young entrepreneurs who are changing the face of everyday business and improve commerce's impact on the wider world," says Striding Out founder Heather Wilkinson.
Some of the companies that caught our attention:
http://www.thisisredbutton.co.uk/ - design company developing products exclusively for the Aid and Humanitarian markets.
Fair Gift - Fair Trade gifts from Asia, Africa and South America.
TribeWanted - inspirational holidays with a purpose
LM3Online - helps you measure your organization's economic contribution to its community.
Women Like Us - helps Mom's reintegrate into the working community
The Hub - connecting 'the new entrepreneurs' with each other across the globe.
Journeys For Change - takes extraordinary leaders on interactive expeditions to learn from the world's most inspiring social and environmental entrepreneurs.