I had an interesting lunch the other day with a friend, Drew Chafetz, who is a successful social entrepreneur. His organization, http://www.lovefutbol.org/ builds soccer fields in poor areas around the world.
After talking business, I asked about how he is personally these days and how does being a (social) entrepreneurial affect him personally? He responded, “I would never — or very rarely — recommend someone do this for a living. “
Overall, I would say that he has been successful: he has talked about his enterprise at Harvard Business School; has some of the top contacts in the Inter-American Development Bank; has support from professional soccer players; and still he doesn’t recommend the lifestyle as a social entrepreneur. His last big push for his organization might be the possiblity of having Adidas and The World Cup sponsor his organization to build 12 soccer fields in all 12 Brazilian cities where the Cup will be in 2014.
There are 100 reasons why not to be an entrepreneur…100 ways it affects you personally…100 daily struggles. Is it worth being an entrepreneur after you remove the glory, money or respect that you get? Can passion be traded for less income over the long-term?
Drew, I assume, doesn’t make a killer income b/c he is a small nonprofit working in the low-profit end of the market. His reward is helping the poorest people on earth play the game he loves. He trades profit for passion.
It seems that a lot of passionate social entrepreneurs get worked to death — that is, they work their passion to death. I think out loud: if a (social) entrepreneur is not earning an income that satisfies his/her lifestyle and they are not breaking through to celebratory status, how long can they drive off passion alone?
WHAT REALLY DRIVES YOU? Passion? Profit? Reputation?…and how long will it keep you going through the tough days?