Spiritual Entrepreneurship: It’s a Full-Blown Movement Now

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Christian social innovation, redemptive entrepreneurship, missional innovation, spiritual entrepreneurship – pick your handle – is no longer niche. It’s a full-blown, interfaith movement—and if you’re a Christian social innovator who is curious about learning with social innovators from other faith backgrounds, here’s your chance.

I recently met Alan Harlam, Director of Spiritual Entrepreneurship at Clal, an organization committed to drawing on Jewish wisdom to serve the public good. If I thought social innovation was a Christian thing (and it is), Alan blew open my imagination by pointing out that all religious traditions participate in it in various ways. Alan used to serve as Director of Social Innovation at Brown University. As a professor, he leveraged years of business experience to help students develop and launch social impact ventures. Then he had an epiphany: he realized that his teaching on social entrepreneurship was a strikingly faithful expression of his deep-rooted Jewish values. “I really rediscovered my faith through social entrepreneurship,” he told me. Soon he joined several other Jewish leaders in building Clal’s “Glean Incubator” for spiritual entrepreneurs.

That’s where you come in. The Glean Incubator offers online education for spiritual entrepreneurs of any faith background, and encourages them to draw on the strengths of their faith traditions as they create new spiritual ventures. Baptists and Buddhists, Methodists and Muslims, Jews and Unitarians – they’re all there. Glean offers two opportunities, and they are accepting applications now:

SHIFT is a 6 week, multi-faith community of “change agents,” led by six guest faculty, to equip participants “with the mindset shift necessary to approach our changing world with a lens of abundance,” and the tools to begin building something new. Go here to learn more: shift
START is an intensive, 20-week MBA-level program in Spiritual Entrepreneurship from Columbia Business School that teaches human-centered design, empathy-building, prototyping, fundraising, and everything in between. Start’s faculty includes Columbia Business School professors, thought leaders in faith innovation, and field experts to deliver tools, insights, and coaching for your venture.  Go here to learn more: gleannetwork.org/start

If you join one of these courses, please write and let us know how it went!


Kenda Creasy Dean

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