If there’s one comment I hear more than any other when I tell people that I work with mission-driven or purposeful companies, it’s “oh, you mean charities and social enterprise?”.

In a word “no”. 

I believe that your structure is irrelevant when it comes to your values, your mission, or your aspiration for your business.

Structures, people, tools, offices - all these can and will change over time. 

Your mission should not. 

I’ve worked with limited companies who do great work, are responsible members of the communities they operate in, are environmentally responsible, treat their staff well, and - shock horror - make a profit too.

Likewise I’ve worked with charities and social enterprises whose behaviour appalled me, and whose customers suffered for it whatever their good intentions and supposed values were. 

Of course it wasn't the structure that caused these behaviours and outcomes, but the people involved and the values of the organisation. It is entirely possible to do good and make money. You can be socially minded and commercially astute.

The future does not belong to any particular corporate structure more than any other. 

I believe it belongs to those entrepreneurs and leaders who strive to find that magical balance of mission, values, aspiration and commerciality, whatever structure they choose.