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Many students, especially in business school today, want to be investment bankers or consultants, how do you think it would be possible to change their motivation away from solely monetary terms towards more social responsibility? Young people always like to be achievers, but they have to be presented with the opportunity to achieve in a certain area. If we can add another line of achievement besides financial goals, some will choose this direction, like social business. Here the achievement would be not only making money for oneself, but solving problems, using one’s talent and ideas to solve some of the most severe issues of the world. Then people would start to recognise this is a great thing to do; this person has changed the world, has changed the whole way of looking at the problem and that person would immediately get recognition. That opportunity does not exist today, but social business is becoming more popular and some business schools are now creating

important to change the mentality and attitude of the new generation, tomorrow’s leaders. As of today, how can university students realistically get involved with the social business concept? One easy way would be to start a nucleus of Grameen Creative Lab. It would start like a club to begin with and gradually become more formally organised. Then faculty members could be brought on board, as well as academics, business people. Then you could see if you can create a social business, try to network with other social businesses or Grameen Creative Labs, get to know each other, participate, observe and support each other. What single piece of advice would you like to pass along to our student readers still in university today? I would say that every individual has the power to change the world! So we do not have to feel small by

“So far we have got Grameen Creative Labs in Japan, the UK, Germany, Bangkok, a lot of places and many more will come - Hopefully soon at Oxford, or at the Wharton School in Pennsylvania, too...” social business chairs and are opening institutes for social business. Gradually students will have the opportunity to make the decision whether they want to go into social business activities or they will go do the traditional activities. Do you find that business schools so far are quite receptive to that idea? Yes, very receptive, all the ones we talked to so far have been very open-minded and receptive. Some have adopted it already; others are on the way to adopting it. They listen, because they know it is a serious matter and the times are calling for changes. They want to include it into their curriculum, introduce specialised courses. We have only been promoting this idea to introduce social paths into business schools for the past 3 years, and there has been a lot of change already. It is

thinking “What can I do? These are big, inf luential people, they can do it.” This idea has to go. I may be small in the context of large, but I have the same mindpower and creative power as everybody else and if I come up with one idea it might be that it is my idea that can have the spark to change the whole thing. We all have a tremendous capacity to achieve, we just have to believe in ourselves and go out and try it. If you can get 3 or 5 people out of poverty or create 5 new jobs then other people will start looking at the way you did it and your idea will spread and affect more and more people. And your idea might work in a lot of situations, no matter whether in NY or a remote village in Guatemala. Do not give up, use your capacity, you have got it in you, use it and do not let it go. iBR

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International Business Review - Spring 2010  

The Spring 2010 edition of the IBR.

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