YOUTH IN USA: DEVELOPING ENTREPRENEURS & SOCIAL INNOVATORS OF THE FUTURE

Example: Social Innovation Youth Incubator
Partners: Institute of Evolutionary Leadership

GOODdler Social Innovation Youth Incubator is one of the first accelerator programs that help youth explore what it takes to redesign entire social realities for a better world. This unique program puts social entrepreneurship in a larger context and reveals often overlooked possibilities to address systemic root causes of local and global issues. With the growing recognition of systemic change as a necessary alternative to failing models in philanthropy, policy, and social entrepreneurship, we need to connect youth with cutting-edge thinking and practical experience of redesigning social realities for a more just, sustainable, and flourishing civilization.

Inspire to lead:

Identify strengths and know how to use them. Strength-based Leadership Development. This is the time when individual strengths are identified and teams are formed. Youth will learn how to use individual strengths to benefit the team. 

IDEA HACKATHON:

The purpose of the Idea Hackathon is threefold:  to set shared norms and expectations for the weeks ahead, to select 6 ideas that will be explored by participants during the program, and to form teams around those ideas. This 2-day process starts with relationship building and setting the context for the program through a shared experience of the Social Complexity Game - a 2h dive into exploring how our social realities are created and how we can make conscious decisions to evolve those realities.

The second day of the hackathon starts with an overview of the 3 tracks of the program:

  • Heroes (socially responsible entrepreneurs): Should demonstrate the potential to improve quality of life of their employees and customers by creating decent job opportunities and delivering genuine value for the customers in an ethical and sustainable way.

  • Saviors (social entrepreneurs): Should demonstrate the potential to effectively address symptoms of a specific social or environmental issue through market mechanisms without unintended negative systemic consequences.

  • Evolutionaries (evolutionary entrepreneurs): Should demonstrate the potential to use entrepreneurship as a vehicle for making the world more just, sustainable, and flourishing for all by intentionally redesigning worldviews, cultures, and institutions that perpetuate a complex, systemic issue.

While using market mechanisms is a requirement for all projects, participants can choose whether they want to work on building a socially responsible business, make a social impact through a social enterprise, or start an evolutionary initiative that uses entrepreneurship in combination with other activities to catalyze systemic change.

On that day participants share ideas they have for their ventures or generate new ideas. Before lunch, participants collectively select 6 ideas (2 for each track) and form teams around them. These ideas might evolve and change significantly throughout the program, but members of each team will stay together until the graduation. The day ends with guidelines and an experiential exercise that will help participants do stakeholder discovery in the weeks ahead.  

The second half of each of the two days is dedicated to leadership developments. Besides working on their projects participants get support in identifying, understanding and building on their strengths using CliftonStrengths Assessment and developing some of the Evolutionary Leadership Competencies. While education and mentoring on Strength-based Leadership and Evolutionary Leadership continues throughout the program, the related sessions of the Idea Hackathon have a special role of laying the foundation for participants' leadership development.

FLOURISHING BUSINESS MODEL GENERATION WORKSHOP:

The purpose of the Flourishing Business Model Generation workshop is to get an understanding of the role of business models in entrepreneurship and social change and to start designing business models based on the stakeholder discovery research conducted by the teams.

On the first day of the workshop teams present their research to each other and to their Track Curators, do exercises that help participants learn and embody key insights they need to design relevant business models that consider all ecosystem actors, learn useful conceptual frameworks and study cases of real-world businesses, social enterprises, and systemic change initiatives.

On the second day, participants are guided through a step-by-step process of designing the first iteration of their business model using the Flourishing Business Model Canvas - a cutting-edge framework that expands the conventional Business Model Canvas to include the systemic approach to the role of an entrepreneurial venture in social and environmental context. Teams then present their canvases and receive guidance on the next phase of the program: Testing.

TESTING:

In the weeks after the Business Model Workshop participants refine their business model, build a prototype, roll the sleeves and work in the community, testing the prototype with customers, civic, nonprofit and corporate partners, and other stakeholders. As teams gather feedback on their prototype, they adjust or even completely redesign their business models based on that feedback. During this phase, teams continue to receive support from their Track Curator, leadership mentors, advisors, and other teams.

STAKEHOLDER DISCOVERY:

Stakeholder Discovery corresponds with the Customer Discovery Phase of a conventional business accelerator. Having a great idea and even having an extensive experience with the issue does not guarantee that your idea is relevant. Many people think that this rule does not apply to them for one reason or another, but, with rare exceptions, everyone has to learn to challenge their assumptions - either deliberately or after a hard clash with reality. In traditional entrepreneurship, everything starts with finding and studying prospective customers and their needs. The goals of this program require a more challenging approach: to find and study different stakeholder groups including those who do not necessarily have the power or resources to impact your venture but might be significantly affected by what you do. We also ask participants to look behind the perceived needs and find out what worldviews, cultures, and institutions created those needs and identify potential solutions or interventions that could address those needs either directly or through changing their context.

Each team does this work in the weeks after the Idea Hackathon supported by weekly calls or meetings with the Track Curator as well as flexible advisory relationships with established entrepreneurs, investors, professionals, and thought leaders that the team was able to get interested in supporting their idea. Some of such advisors attend GOODdler hackathons to select their mentees while others can be identified and approached independently with the support of the Track Curator. Teams also have a chance to check in with each other during a peer mentoring call.

In addition to that, each participant's leadership development is supported through weekly leadership development sessions with a Strength-Based Leadership Mentor and Evolutionary Leadership Mentor (Strength-Based Leadership and Evolutionary Leadership sessions switch every week).

GO TO MARKET/COMMUNITY STRATEGY WORKSHOP:

This 1-day workshop helps teams prepare for the launch of their venture. Teams that got traction with their stakeholders during the testing phase design strategies they can start implementing right away. Teams that had to pivot or otherwise abandon their original ideas without confirming a fit with the market & the community, learn frameworks and principles they will use once they get traction with their prototypes.   

PITCH WORKSHOP:

The 1-day Pitch Workshop is offered right after the Go To Market/Community Strategy Workshop and guides teams through a step-by-step process to design their pitches using a track-appropriate pitch canvas. At the end of the day, teams present their pitches and get initial feedback from advisors and mentors. Here are sample questions of the Savior (Social Entrepreneurship) Track Canvas:

Simple statement of what change you and your product/service are making in the world

  • A memorable one sentence explanation of what you do for customers & other stakeholders  

Impact Opportunity

  • What is the social or environmental issue you are addressing?  

  • What symptoms of this issue are painful for your key stakeholders?

  • What is the data that demonstrates the scale and the scope of these symptoms? Who would pay for having these symptoms addressed and how did you validate that?

  • How is the social and environmental context changing and what does it mean for the focus of your social enterprise?

Product/Service

  • As simply as possible: what does your product/service do for customers?  

  • How does it work?

  • How have you tested it with customers?

Product/Service Demo

  • Product/service demo? (always risky but powerful if it works…)  

  • Can you show a real customer using it?

What's Unique

  • How is your solution different from your competition or alternatives?   

  • Show that you’ve researched the market and know what competition is out there.  

Customer Traction

  • Success so far? Pilot customers? Major brands?    

  • Progression in users, subscribers, downloads?

  • Customer reference quotes or movies? PR coverage, competition wins?

  • Use data and facts to strengthen your case   

Money & Impact

  • How does your social enterprise get paid?     

  • How do you evaluate/measure your impact?  

  • What data are you looking for? How do you collect it?  

  • How can you scale your impact?    

Systemic Consequences

  • What is the systemic context for the issue you are addressing?       

  • What are the core assumptions behind the way you evaluate/measure your impact?   

  • How will you ensure that your social enterprise does not perpetuate issue while profiting from addressing its symptoms?   

  • How will you look out for unintended systemic consequences and take timely, appropriate action to avoid significant negative impact?     

Resources & Expertise

  • Who are members of your team and what role does everyone play?        

  • What skills and expertise does your team have to support your story?    

  • What’s special about the character of your team that will make you stand out?   

  • What key resources does your team have and what resources are you looking for?   

Call to Action and End Statement

  • Finish the pitch strongly with a clear request for the audience to take action – what is their first next step?    

Why You?

  • Why do you care about addressing the symptoms of this social/environmental issue? How has your life been affected by those symptoms?

  • Why should your audience have the confidence that you will do what you say you are going to do?      

  • Why You? can show up in any part of the pitch    

NOTE: This canvas is developed by the Institute for Evolutionary Leadership, LLC from The Pitch Canvas© by Best 3 Minutes Presentation Services licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, go to: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/ Best 3 Minutes Presentation Services developed the canvas from an original idea by David Beckett

PITCH MASTERY & RELATIONSHIP BUILDING:

During this phase, teams focus on perfecting their pitches while identifying potential contacts they would like to present their project to or invite to the Demo Day. This phase features intensive interactions within and across teams, with advisors, track curators, and potential supporters to get feedback on multiple iterations of the pitch and make sure teams are ready to give the best possible presentation on the Demo Day. There are no individual leadership development sessions at this stage to allow participants to completely focus on their pitches, however, leadership development mentors still monitor participants' behavior and reflections.

DEMO DAY & GRADUATION:

In the first part of the day, participants have an opportunity to reflect on their GOODdler journey and map out their personal and professional evolution, and articulate tangible takeaways from the program. After lunch, teams present to a panel of investors, social impact experts, and thought leaders in the field of systemic change. The judges give feedback to the teams, evaluate presentations, and select one team that demonstrated the most outstanding achievement in the program. That team will be invited to pitch at the GOODdler Social Innovation Youth Summit together with other teams selected by the GOODdler Foundation through a rigorous selection process. The Demo Day ends with a graduation ceremony when track curators present certificates of completion from the GOODdler Foundation and the Institute for Evolutionary Leadership to the participants. After graduating from the program, each participant receives a personalized leadership development report with notes from their Track Curator and mentors.

EVENTS:

  • Silicon Valley Open Doors Conference - Mingle with startup founders, business people and investors to learn about an entrepreneurship and to create life-changing connections. Some of the participants of the program will get a chance to pitch their projects to a panel of investors at the Conference.

  • Demo Days. Presentations of proposed solutions to the audience of philanthropists, social impact investors, and global civic and corporate leaders.

  • Gooddler Social Impact Youth Summit, co-hosted with the United Nations. The annual Gooddler Social Innovation Youth Summit is a vibrant forum for university and high-school student leaders advancing global development to learn, challenge, grow, and connect with a global community of the changemakers.

  • ECOSOC Youth Forum (United Nations, New York HQ).
    Members of the Gooddler Leadership Cohort will be invited to attend the UN HQ in New York to participate at the ECOSOC Youth Forum.

 


When: December, 2018 - May, 2019

(all dates are subject to change and will be confirmed at the acceptance to the program)

Time commitment:

  • 4 intensive in-person training sessions (1-2 days each)
    Must be able to attend at least 3), weekly virtual meetings by teams led by expert advisors, independent work 6+ hours/week.

  • One-on-one in person and/or virtual meetings with project appropriate leaders, CEOs of startups and industry experts (as needed).

  • SVOD Conference, May 2019 (optional). Selected projects will get a chance to pitch to a panel of high profile impact investors at the Conference.

  • ECOSOC Youth Forum (United Nations, New York HQ), January 2019. (Gooddler Leadership Cohort)

Where:

Multiple locations, Silicon Valley, California, US

Who:

13+
No tech experience is needed.

Cost:

$2500/per person (covers lunches during face-to-face sessions, all materials, and other resources).
Scholarships are available upon request.

 


Leadership Cohort:

What:

An additional opportunity is available to a small, selected group of youth to join our Gooddler Social Inovation Youth Incubator Leadership Cohort. It includes: an executive leadership development, one-on-one coaching and mentoring; co-facilitation of Gooddler youth programs; attending the UN working sessions in NY as a Gooddler Intern; participation in meetings of an organizing committee of the Social Impact panel at the Silicon Valley Open Doors Conference in May 2019.

Who:

Youth with some formal or informal leadership experience (a president of a club, a founder of a business, etc) 

How:

Please, apply to join the Gooddler Social Innovation Youth Incubator and mention your interest in our Leadership Cohort under "Is there anything else you would like to share with us?". We will reach out to you. 

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VISION

Inspire youth to become a part of a solution to the most pressing local and global issues.

Goals

To help youth explore what it takes to redesign entire social realities for a better world

To develop in youth qualities of an evolutionary leader, a designer of an alternative economic future

To provide youth with an awareness of and exposure to entrepreneurship: How to see problems as opportunities

To present a wide spectrum of social challenges, share effective strategies and innovative methods of solving them

To connect the next generation of entrepreneurs, educators, activists, philanthropists, impact investors, and innovators


When:

December, 2018 - May, 2019

(all dates are subject to change and will be confirmed at the acceptance to the program)

Time commitment:

  • 4 intensive in-person training sessions (1-2 days each)
    Must be able to attend at least 3), weekly virtual meetings by teams led by expert advisors, independent work 6+ hours/week.

  • One-on-one in person and/or virtual meetings with project appropriate leaders, CEOs of startups and industry experts (as needed).

  • SVOD Conference, May 2019 (optional). Selected projects will get a chance to pitch to a panel of high profile impact investors at the Conference.

  • ECOSOC Youth Forum (United Nations, New York HQ), January 2019. (Gooddler Leadership Cohort)

Where:

Multiple locations, Silicon Valley, California, US

Who:

13+
No tech experience is needed.

Cost:

$2500/per person (covers lunches during face-to-face sessions, all materials, and other resources).
Scholarships are available upon request.