The report will elaborate the characteristics and traits of the entrepreneurship. The business model for the case study is of a smart-phone company based in the Netherlands, Fairphone. The company was established in the year 2009 by Peter van Der Mark and Bas Van Abel. The company launched the campaign against the leaders in the industry like Apple, Blackberry and Samsung, they were against the exploitation of the common people and resources of the Democratic republic of Congo. The revolutionary steps taken by the company are also discussed in this report. In the end the challenges ahead of the company are also conferred.
An entrepreneur strives on bringing innovative methods in their respective industries to gain the competitive advantage over its rivals. In today’s context where there is intense competition among companies, the entrepreneurship skills can help to get hold of the market. In the smart phone industry the competition is more intense due to the presence of large amount of companies. The new entrants from China made it more worse for the older players to hold their market share. The entrepreneur who tries to take the social cost into consideration, made it to the social entrepreneur. The company under consideration, Fairphones stood against the odds to develop a phone which tried to minimise the exploitations of the natural resources of the Democratic Republic of Congo and also placed its manufacturing order into the facilities which has better working conditions than other even not fully free from exploitation.
Analysis of Entrepreneur traits/characteristics
The entrepreneur irrespective of their industry has found to have some common traits or characteristics (Phillips, et. al., 2015).These traits lead to innovation, changing the whole business models of the industry due to the daring or radical changes bring forth by the entrepreneurs. Some of the traits are discussed below:
- Vision and Ambition: the entrepreneurs are different from other people in the way that they have a vision, sometimes a vision that can change the whole landscape of the business. They strive to do something which can have a huge impact on the people’s life and brings monetary benefits to the entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurs are found to be highly ambitious about their visions and dreams. They work really hard with all the passion they have to accomplish their dream projects. The Fairphone CEO, Van Abel has a vision to minimize the exploitation of the resources from war torn countries of Africa and to reduce the e-waste by having vision of a smart phone which is more than durable than the others. He had the ambition to tackle the large corporations such as Apple(Renz, 2016).
- Innovative: just having a vision or idea about something is not sufficient to be an entrepreneur; your vision should be innovation. When visions are collided they don’t produce anything new, innovation is necessary to get the advantage in the market. In this century companies spend billions for the research and development of the new products just to get the competitive advantage (Rawhouser, et. al., 2019) The CEO of fairphone, has the innovative idea of producing a durable phone, which the competitors can’t think of as they create their demand by launching new models in year or two. The marketing strategy of the company was also unique as it was more of a social campaign, and they prefer to call their phone as “ethical phone.”
- Risk Lover: a person who is averse to take any risk can’t b qualified as an entrepreneur. The business in its initial phase depends on its entirety on the entrepreneurship skills of the entrepreneur at the helm. It is a fundamental part of the entrepreneurship skills. The entrepreneur has to handle various types of risks associated with the functioning n the industry. The developers of the “ethical phone” has several risks before them, they even did not have any product design, when they launched the social campaign or can be called as the awareness campaign, then they announced that they will launch their own smartphone, which was the biggest risk, as they were going against the odds and the biggest market leaders(Macke, et. Al., 2018).
- Commitment: bringing some big changes in the society or any field is not achieved in a day or two. This requires continuous efforts and endurance, even after failing not stopping working in the direction to achieve the goals. The flag bearers of the awareness campaign took 5 years to launch their product. They have work day in and out.
- Ethical: the morals also plays an important role in the management of the business, corporate governance can lead to the creation of the high goodwill in the market.
Social entrepreneurship’, whereby an entrepreneur establishes and/or leads an organisation or initiative engaged in social change. But launching and running a social enterprise is not without its challenges.
The entrepreneur tries to solve the problems of the society through their skills, this leads to the social entrepreneurship. The given case study of the Fairphones, the two persons became social entrepreneur by creating awareness of the exploitations of the natural resources and the labourers in the other countries. The social entrepreneurship is also not free of challenges.
- Recruitment: the social enterprises are not run to make profit, so are not in a position to pay the competitive salaries. They need to find the persons with the similar mindset, who wants to serve the common purpose. The recruitment process of the kinds of people is not an easy task. Young people won’t work for the organisations like Fairphone, because of the lucrative salaries offered by the competitors.
- Funding: For the endeavours which don’t have a self-supporting income stream, financing and speculations keep on being one of the greatest difficulties. Indeed, even in the wake of intersection the early obstacle of getting the underlying venture or allow financing for the thought, securing development capital can be an imperative in achieving achievement. Social Entrepreneurs are for the most part financed by establishments, humanitarians, or governments whose run of the mill helps are unobtrusive in size and moderately present moment. Be that as it may, a business that doesn’t guarantee benefits inside five to seven years won’t pull in even humble measures of ordinary speculation, regardless of whether the goal behind the thought is respectable or the item vital. To acquire government reserves, various obstacles must be crossed, for example, extensive strategies, organization and regularly the order to rearrange to fit the standard rules. Gathering pledges isn’t just tedious and costly, yet additionally social associations are not generally compensated for good execution as expanded subsidizing. Social Marketplace doesn’t compensate a social business person as promptly as the business commercial center accomplishes for business visionaries. In conclusion, with the nearness of various social associations, furious challenge exists among one another for human and monetary capital among other fundamental assets(Kickul and Lyons, 2016).
- Implementation Hurdles: Many noble ideas for social impact sound promising in the beginning and get off to a good start but get watered down in the implementation. There could be several reasons for implementation failure such as inability to grow and maintain the quality, hardships of being able to afford experienced people, waning motivation, external hurdles such as political upheaval or stock market plunge or a natural disaster, insufficient financial and human resources, and apathy and opposition from various sources. The idea needs to continuously evolve and adapt to the circumstances, failing which success becomes difficult to maintain.
The social entrepreneurship is needed for bringing the change in the society in which the big corporations are maximising their profits at any cost. As the resources are scarce, they should be efficiently used so that the future generations can also use them.
Kickul, J. and Lyons, T.S., 2016. Understanding social entrepreneurship: The relentless pursuit of mission in an ever changing world. Routledge.
Macke, J., Sarate, J.A.R., Domeneghini, J. and da Silva, K.A., 2018. Where do we go from now? Research framework for social entrepreneurship. Journal of cleaner production, 183, pp.677-685.
Phillips, W., Lee, H., Ghobadian, A., O’Regan, N. and James, P., 2015. Social innovation and social entrepreneurship: A systematic review. Group & Organization Management, 40(3), pp.428-461.
Rawhouser, H., Cummings, M. and Newbert, S.L., 2019. Social impact measurement: Current approaches and future directions for social entrepreneurship research. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 43(1), pp.82-115.
Renz, D.O., 2016. The Jossey-Bass handbook of nonprofit leadership and management. John Wiley & Sons.