As we reflect on the end of our first BNest programme we have absorbed several important lessons. Probably the chief of those is that in social, much more than in commercial, there are two parallel journeys – the enterprise journey and the personal journey.

While much of the enterprise journey mirrors the commercial enterprise journey the personal one is much different. In an earlier blog we spoke on the key role passion plays in both but this is at heart the central driver in social.

There is also though a further difference we did not at first comprehend. We had though the social enterprise journey was a simple choice for the person to make and be comfortable with – either to progress or to move on to different space. In BNest our aim was not to force a choice, but rather to help the person make their “right” personal choice.

To our surprise there is a third choice – simply to “park” for a period before making their choice. As already mentioned social enterprise is almost always driven from personal passion grounded in personal experience. Sometimes that comes at a high personal cost. And so sometimes the choice that is the right choice is to “hold” for a while. The social enterprise is a demanding journey and sometimes the right choice for the person is simply to recover from their journey to that point – to give themselves time to recover, charge their batteries and ground themselves. The passion that drives them can come at a high personal cost but equally without them there will be no enterprise. A valid and courageous decision can simply be to hold, recharge and then decide. Our future programmes will recognise and support this choice better as well.