Thursday, October 11, 2012
On Social Enterprises and Public Money Being Used With them
The term social enterprise has for better or for worse been inexorably linked to rich bright things who do not need a wage, but rather would use good business principles in starting grass routes organisations for delivery of charity vis a vis public services. This has become a stereotype of rich young thing bares the guilt of entire dynasties by going to Africa and doing some good doing.
However the concept of the non-profit-organisation as a social enterprise is a strong force for democracy and societal values which will in future in both the tertiary economies in the west and the 3rd world, come to be a new model for delivery of public services.
Why should we who support democracy over oligarchy (Obama vs Romney and Putin) embrace what is still outsourcing and de-unionising?
With this full blown recession of the non oil economies, private companies are pleased about national and state governmentstrying to balance their books and are looking for opportunities for private contracting of more public services. However they will find that this will often sting them in the tail.
In future the tactic of suicide tenders to oust otherwise efficient public services and monopolies may fall on its face as more social enterprises, organised by charities and trade unions ( at both local and national even international level) take the mantel of the tender process.
This is in fact the best way for labour to organise now because NPO's are able to work for slimmer margins and deliver higher quality.
Also they need less marketing and middle management because they do not conform to what private investors would expect and larger organisations impose upon their public supply divisions and projects. In marketing they are near customer, at point of care already. They know the business because they are the business: These are skilled, motivated people who have quality as the goal, not income and profit.
One thing that charities and locally organised union group suppliers need is access to a central technocracy to share on a national level. This needs to be non political and although receiving public funds by some route, it should not be under political control. Larger charities and Unions can evolve and offer this centrally, as some have in terms of HSE and legal advice. They just need to change tack to include quality management.
they will be able to outcompete the spivs and the cheating multinationals.