KK @ Impact 100 Thinking Aloud 2 – How the Impact 100 Could Make an Even Greater Impact

2014-02-18 12:00 am


Editor’s Note: 

In this issue, I will continue to think aloud and elaborate on my tentative ideas about Impact 100. I am excited about this ‘project’ – indeed it will probably be the most important project I have ever undertaken.

As such, I need and treasure your feedback and suggestions. Please write to me if you have any thought on the subject.


A Recap

Let me recap what I have covered in the last Thinking Aloud exercise: 

  1.   I will be changing the focus of this Newsletter to target at a smaller group of readers – a hundred or so changemakers in Hong Kong who are making significant contribution to the field of social entrepreneurship. I am calling this group tentatively Impact 100.
  1.   My purpose is not just changing the Newsletter but to use it as one of means available to this group to learn from and support each other so that collectively they could make a greater impact.
  1.   In addition to making changes in this Newsletter, I have in mind a set of additional and integrated initiatives to enable the Impact 100 group to become the driving force in transforming the social entrepreneurship field in HK and this part of the world, including mainland China. 

Now let me elaborate what I am thinking.


Platform for a target audience

I would like to create a platform (of which this Newsletter is an integral part) to serve the following groups:

Primary: Impact 100


  • Aspiring Impact 100
  • General public interested in social entrepreneurship

The question is: how could I capture the attention and interest of the Impact 100?

I ask myself: what do they really need in order to fully realize their potential to contribute to this field?

This is not easy to answer. In fact, they themselves might not have thought too much about it. I was tempted to interview some of them to find out more about their thinking. But then I have second thoughts. I was reminded of something that Henry Ford said after he launched the Model T: “If I had asked what the customer wanted, they might say a faster horse.”

Then I tried to get into their shoes to look at the issue from their angle. After some reflections I came to feel that the typical Impact 100 faces the following situations: 

  • Each focusing on individual projects via individual effort – not realizing the potential of gaining support from other practitioners in the field
  • Lack of communication and interaction among the leading practitioners – loss of opportunities of mutual learning, synergy and collaboration
  • Unaware of possible common vision and agenda – opportunity cost of bigger dreams and impact

I could see that each of the Impact 100 is dedicated and preoccupied with his/her own challenges. They are really exemplary in their work and contribution. But there is currently little mechanism for them to secure support from each other.

What is even more disheartening for me is the lack of communication and interaction among the leading practitioners. Take for instance the Organizing Committee of the annual Social Enterprise Summit (I am speaking out of my experience as Vice-Chair for the past six years). The members (some 30 to 40 of them) do know each other and they attended numerous meetings for getting the Summit organized. But they seldom have the opportunities to sit down and have causal and in-depth discussions with each other. We have been allowing a lot of opportunities for mutual learning, synergy and collaboration slip through our fingers.  

Is it possible for this group to have a common vision and agenda for actions? Absolutely. But with little interaction among the group, such a possibility is unlikely to be realized.

What is to be done?

This is the question I am exploring. My current thinking focuses on three inter-related initiatives.

The first is this Newsletter. From the next issue onwards, I will tailor it to the needs (manifest or hidden) of the Impact 100.

Second, I am planning to build a brand new website that would enable the Impact 100 to share information, practices, insights, resources, etc. in an interactive and open manner. The website will be open to all of course, but the primary users will be the Impact 100 community. It will take some time to get this ready, possible 6 to 12 months.

Third, I propose to engage the entire Impact 100 community to write a book together. This will be an ambitious but doable project. I took much insight from the creation of the book Business Model Generation. This highly influential book is the product of contribution from over one hundred professionals in the field.  The two main authors masterminded the book and started writing and publishing the chapters in an open platform. Hundreds of practitioners in the field contributed ideas, suggestions and short pieces to be incorporated into the book.

I think we could take a similar approach to produce a book that would provide a sense of direction and strategy for the development of social entrepreneurship in the next ten years.

I target to have the book published within a year.


Outline contents of the book

I have in mind a simple structure of the book. Basically it will consist of three parts:


Part I – Taking Stock of the Development and Achievement of Social Entrepreneurship

Incidentally, 2013 was the year in which three major studies were undertaken to review the field of social entrepreneurship in Hong Kong. They are: a) a study known as Engage HK, sponsored by the RS Group; b) A Study on Social Enterprise Development by the think-tank Bauhinia Foundation, and c) a research study commissioned by the Home Affairs Bureau and undertaken by a joint research team  from the CUHK Centre of Entrepreneurship and HSBC-HKCSS Social Enterprise Business Centre. This study has just been completed and has yet to be released to the public.

I would like to make good use of the findings of these three studies to provide a snap shot of the current state of development of social entrepreneurship in HK.


Part II – Individual Profiles of Impact 100

The highlights will include: their work and achievements, their aspirations for the future, and the challenges they anticipate to face.

Each profile will be around 1,500 words. Collectively they will be providing insightful information on what the leading practitioners are currently doing as well as what they would like to achieve in the future. This will prove to be valuable not only to the Impact 100 community but also to those who want to know what is going on in the field, including young people who aspire to make a difference.  


Part III -- A Vision and an Agenda for the Next 10 Years

This will be the most challenging and important part of the book. And it is also the part to which each of Impact 100 could contribute ideas and insights.

I would venture to prepare some initial drafts for feedback and comments, hopefully leading to a lively debate and discussion.

I will of course start with the Vision, which may or may not generate much controversy. The part on Agenda might stimulate more debates. I have already some major areas we could possibly focus on and these will be presented for comments and discussion in the months ahead.

It seems to me that there are at least two stages of this exercise. First is to deliberate on the agenda items and build consensus on the strategies to realize them. The greatest challenge will be the second stage: generating commitment to the final discussion outcomes. For it is only the latter that will make things happen.

So much for the time being. I look forward to hearing from all of you.

Your feedback will be most welcome at kakuitse@gmail.com

A Vision and Agenda - HK as the SE Capital of the Far East | 上一篇>> Thinking Aloud – The Coming Transformation of this Newsletter | 下一篇>>


Impact 100

Impact100 是一個為推動香港社會企業發展而設的互動平台,目的是讓一班致力推動社會創新及社會改革者互相認識、學習、和支援,從而擴大他們的影響力 。 Impact100的召集人為謝家駒博士,項目由仁人學社和PMM Media 共同參予製作。


程子俊-重塑資本主義概念 盧子健:願中國成為公民社會 姚子樑—辦社企不是一個社會企業家的事 Daniel Epstein人心中的巨人 黃永隆 -簡單綠 ,負全責


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