Shifting the paradigm towards a more commercially savvy and sustainable not-for-profit sector.

An interesting paradox is rippling through the long-held divide between the not-for-profit and commercial sectors. Businesses in the commercial sector are jostling for position as social and community-minded champions to sustain their share of market. Meanwhile, not-for-profit services are under pressure to develop commercial acumen as their previously secure revenue rugs are increasingly pulled out from under them.

It seems the two previously disparate organisational models are, of necessity for both, drawing closer together on the social good versus profit maximisation spectrum. Many for-profit organisations are already operating in the human services arena, often adopting social entrepreneur-style business practices.

Similarly, the terms ‘socially conscious’ and ‘corporate sustainability’ are being linked together more and more. Companies and products are going green to appease the desire of their customers to buy environmentally conscious brands, and some corporates are now requiring their employees to spend a few of their work hours ‘volunteering’ with community service organisations. A socially conscious image is becoming a requirement for commercial sustainability.


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