There’s more to a successful business than pure profit. It’s about pursuing passion and ultimately purpose, Minister of State with Responsibility for Crime Prevention Corey Lane has told graduates of the Barbados Youth Business Trust (BYBT) Social Enterprise Incubator.
Lane urged graduates to also seek wise counsel as they become the entrepreneurial minded social change agents in the world.
While recalling his work with the Nature Fun Ranch at the age of 15 in 1998, Lane said that he learnt some hard lessons from not seeking wise advice.
“I’m very sorry that I did not do like many of you in this room and seek out guidance, seek out facilitators, seek out programmes like these that can provide the guidance. I can tell you that this incubator is saving you about 10 years of problems,” he said, admitting that he learnt that from harsh experiences.
The Minister said programmes like the BYBT makes business less difficult for young people.
“We did not have the idea of social enterprise. We did not have the idea of the Barbados Youth Business Trust. We did not have the facilitators and mentors so we struggled and it was very difficult,” he added.
To those who attended the ceremony in the conference room at the Courtyard by Marriott along Hastings on December 16, he shared that it’s important to pursue business out of a genuine love, similar to many who are wealthy.
“A lot of us, if we were not doing what we love, we would still be like 97 per cent of the world waking up every day [to just make money]. We believe that the apex and pinnacle is getting that money but we see a lot of wealthy people around the world, and what do they do? They seek purpose for their money and they give a lot of it,” he shared.
Lane lauded the graduates for seeking out their purpose first, before profits. He said that’s the real key to success.
“That will make a humongous difference in your life because ultimately it has to be passion and purpose over profit because the profit will keep you sustainable but for me when I look at all that has been said here and the whole idea of social enterprise it is no longer a terminology but a way of life,” he said.
General Manager of the BYBT Cardelle Fergusson shared that the initiative of the social incubator programme, which was implemented in St Lucia, Barbados and Dominica, was started in 2019 through funding from the European Union.
It was delivered in through the Youth Business Trust.
“A social enterprise is an organization that uses business strategy, to maximize social impact. A social enterprise is not a charity or anything where you are just helping people. It has to be sustainable in order for it to impact its social mission. It is a business,” she said.
Fergusson boasted of the work of the BYBT in helping ideas to flourish
“We have been helping early stage businesses to build out their ideas, to provide structure, to give them the support that is necessary to build stronger social businesses,” she said.
Under the project 54 social entrepreneurs were assisted to start 50 businesses.
The General Manager vowed to continue helping regional young entrepreneurs.
“We intend to sustainably assist other young people through projects such as these,” she said.
Presentations were given by rising entrepreneurs including We Planet’s Christianna Paul, Work Consultancy’s Britany Sealy and St Lucia’s Kimberley Findley on the challenges they faced as women in business and the unwavering dedication to seeing their startups thrive.
Journalist Ricardo Roberts was also awarded on the evening for one of his business ventures. (MR)