In this project First Step Consulting supported an early stage social enterprise to get their idea off the ground. Our client’s social business aimed to act as an empowerment platform for African women through self-acceptance and awareness. At the same time they intended to become a leading player in the natural and organic hair and skin care market. Our dedicated consultants helped this aspiring entrepreneur refine her growth strategy and build key entrepreneurial skills.
As a recently established non-profit enterprise, our client’s most pressing priority was to use their resources in the most cost-efficient way. Their team was very passionate about addressing the issues that African women face in their social spaces and determined to produce handmade, entirely organic products, however, their experience in the business world was limited.
In this project our task was not only about developing a business strategy for our client – we also provided training and support to help the founder translate her passion and experience in social action into viable business prowess. Our team identified the areas of concern within the organisation’s existing business strategy and worked closely with the client to address the most pressing problems. We explored the ways in which the business could expand globally and identified a lucrative target market for our client in Northern America.
Our consultants created a comprehensive database of successful similar social ventures and analysed their strategies, so that our client could make more confident and informed strategic decisions. Complementing this, we identified various international and local organisations with a track record of endorsing African-based and focussed startups to help our client establish partnerships and raise funds. Our extensive findings yielded valuable insights that enabled us to build a detailed action plan of action, incorporating various aspects of the business model, such as cost-effective marketing strategies, financing options for social enterprises, team building, and pricing.
At the conclusion of the project, our team presented their research to the client and made actionable suggestions to support their long-term strategy. As we also delivered a technical, skills-focussed training package to empower our client with the knowledge on the most practical and up-to-date business strategies and tools, FSC helped to further accelerate the growth of this social business and increase their impact. All parties were happy with the result and our client recently informed us that the business is growing and that they are now hiring their first employees.
"Thank you very much for all your help. We are soon to hire our first employees and offer them a training scheme within the company. This is really exciting as it is one step closer to growth and a lot of what your team equipped us with will inform our process moving forward. Again, my utmost gratitude and my regards to the entire team."
— Cofounder, Social Venture