Part of our work allows us to focus on business development and initiatives that help people to envision new possibilities. To do this we have been working on ways to assist individuals and teams as they work through ideas for business startups. To do this we use something called Business Modelling. This form of business development focuses less on making a plan and more on working through the ideas and testing them in the real world. Using something called the “Business Model Canvas,” we create space for ideas to form and grow as they are readied for testing, the crucible where they are measured for validity.
The format itself is not very important, there are many excellent ways to process new business. What is important is the opportunity we have received to help others realize their dreams. We have worked with all levels of society, rich and poor. We have encouraged business development that takes people into account. We have even managed to take our training on the road, beyond Manila, even beyond The Philippines. We work with individuals and teams. Private businesses and agencies developing social enterprise. We have even been invited to help ministry teams develop new strategy for mission that is self sustaining and highly innovative. It is amazing to see what people can dream into reality.
We didn’t set out to become consultants, but that is exactly what has developed. Doors have opened as people hear about our work, allowing us to share in their vision, helping them to refine their ideas as they work out complex issues and complex problems. It has stretched us, challenged us, and mostly humbled us as we have been forced to learn, often from our many mistakes. We often joke that failure is a great teacher and we are always learning. It is a truism but in our case it has proven to be truth. It is good not to take things too seriously.
What is most exciting about this development in our work is the opportunity it has given us to share about marketplace ministry. We are given voice in areas beyond where we imagined, influencing decisions that are shaping business and mission development that considers the gospel as it relates to our neighbours in the workplace. Decisions that are changing the very essence of business purpose, moving to an agenda that adds social and environmental issues to the bottom line, what we personally view as important parts of holistic mission. What is most exciting is our ability to encourage business people, helping them to embrace their calling to serve, as business people, to see the value of business as a means to human flourishing. It is good work, a really great part of our job, and we are blessed to have this opportunity to help people in this particular way.