In recent years, the term “social entrepreneurship” has made its way into our business vocabulary. Social entrepreneurs are creative, driven individuals who look at major social and economic issues and seek to provide solutions in a sustainable manner.
Bill Drayton, CEO, chair, and founder of Ashoka, the largest network of social entrepreneurs around the world, states, “Social entrepreneurs are not content just to give a fish or teach how to fish. They will not rest until they have revolutionized the fishing industry.”
Recognizing that businesses should exist not just to make a profit, but also to have a positive social and economic impact, is good. It’s a step in the right direction. But, as believers in Jesus, have we arrived at the true purpose of business if we stop at social entrepreneurship? Or do we keep going?
Traditional entrepreneurship is a process through which self-driven individuals participate in a free market economy for the purpose of creating wealth for themselves and controlling resources. Social entrepreneurs, who are not satisfied with this kind of entrepreneurship, take entrepreneurship one step further, pursuing a triple bottom line of people, planet, and profit.
However, Biblical Entrepreneurs take the baton and run all the way to the finish line, building Kingdom businesses - transformational companies that reach beyond the triple bottom line. Biblical Entrepreneurs seek to build Kingdom businesses that measure success not only in terms of people, planet, and profit but also soul transformation – changing lives and making an eternal impact.
Thus, Kingdom businesses have a quadruple bottom line:
- People - Providing value to all stakeholders of the business
- Planet - Being good stewards of God’s creation
- Profit - Creating margin to ensure financial viability to further the mission
- Eternity - Using resources and influence to fulfill the great commission
Biblical Entrepreneurs building Kingdom businesses recognize that their business:
- Is God’s business
- Should be managed in God’s way
- Should be managed by God’s stewards
- Should be used to fulfill God’s purposes.
Unfortunately, the traditional approach to entrepreneurship has caused many God-fearing people to stay away from business. Sadly, some Christians have even concluded that business is a secular practice in which they cannot be involved without compromising their faith.
But, the opposite is true! Christians operating Kingdom businesses exercise stewardship over God’s resources in order to serve others profitably for the benefit of the Kingdom of God.
Are you doing business God’s way?
Do you measure success only by your net revenue, or do you rejoice when you see lives being transformed for eternity as a result of your work?
As children of the King, we are called to share our Father’s great heart for people, being a witness for the Lord Jesus Christ in business. We have the opportunity to represent Christ in the marketplace through our actions, conduct, and words. We are called to the marketplace to make an eternal difference, not just to engage in profit-making enterprises to pursue our personal ambitions.
My prayer for you today is that you would continue to live out Kingdom business principles in your life, using the gifts, skills, and treasure that the Lord has given you to reach that quadruple bottom line.