1

I have an idea for a business.

Is it a Social Enterprise?

2

I am starting a social enterprise.

What do I do now?

3

I am trading but need further help

Step 1

What is a Social Enterprise?

Social enterprise is a more ethical, dynamic and independent way to do business. Social entrepreneurs are usually driven by an over-riding passion to improve the world in which we live.
With a social enterprise, after expenses and wages (including yours!) have been deducted, any profits are ploughed back into the business allowing it to grow from strength to strength.

Will your organisation be a Social Enterprise?

Will the organisation trade (sell products or services) as a primary function?

NO ⇒

Maybe you are a voluntary or community group or a charity?

Further support

YES

 
 

Will the organisation have clear social objectives?

NO ⇒

Maybe you will need to set up as a private business.

Further support

YES

 
 

Will the profits of the business be used to achieve the social objectives?

NO ⇒

Maybe you will need to set up as a private business.

Further support

YES

 

Your organisation is a

SOCIAL ENTERPRISE

Step 2

What do I do now?

The next step for your organisation is to write a business plan and register your business.

The next steps.

Have you written a business plan?

NO ⇒

This is an important first step as it will clarify your idea and encourage the necessary research to prove it’s a viable business

Examples, templates and further support

YES

 

Have you decided on your legal status and registered?

NO ⇒

Do you want to be a Ltd Company? A Charity? A CIC?

Find out more

YES

 
 

Have you got your own funding to start-up?

NO ⇒

Don’t worry, there is help available!

Further support

YES

 
 
Your organisation is

READY TO GO
Good luck!

 
 

Step 3

There will be many ups and downs on your journey to becoming a successful social entrepreneur. The main thing I learned is to make sure you get your basic business model right and working brilliantly before taking on too many arms and legs of the business! It’s too easy to lose focus and suddenly find yourself fire-fighting without taking the time out to develop and grow the business in a sustainable manner. Make sure you are forecasting your cash flow so you don’t get into financial difficulty and that you have the correct governance in place. This will include policies and procedures. If you are not sure what you should have, you can contact FVA for a governance health check.

Don’t forget you are not alone. If you are not already part of FSEN, join us today and get support from others that have been through the same journey you have.

I can’t anticipate every stage that you may be at just now but hopefully these will point you in the direction of some of the more obvious ones:

NO

Are things going well?

YES but

I am struggling and need help

Further support

 

I want to grow my business

Further support

I have legal issues

Further support

 

I need to hire more staff

Further support

I need more funding

Further support

 

I need to recruit board members or volunteers

Further support

 
 

I need a loan to expand

Further support

 
 

Myself or my staff need further training

Further support

 
 

I feel ready to bid for public contracts

Further support

 
 

I need marketing/financial analysis/digital expertise

Further support

 
 

How do I do my accounts

Further support

 
 

How do I measure my social impact?

Further support

 
 

I want to get involved in a more tailored national network (such as tourism or health)

Further support