This article was originally published on Sept 18, 2015 on the Social Finance website. It has been cross-posted with permission from the author Joanna Reynolds, Director, Social Enterprise, Centre for Social Innovation.
JUMP Math is a charitable social enterprise with operations across Canada and the USA, reaching over 130,000 students. What motivates JUMP Math’s founder, John Mighton, and his talented team is the knowledge that all students can love math with confidence.
The Trico Charitable Foundation knows that every social enterprise is unique and that important lessons are in the story. I am pleased to recommend that you take a moment to read the Jump Math Case Study. It is one of four highly valuable case studies that every enterprise can learn from.
The Case Study takes us through the JUMP Math’s journey, its pivots and breakthroughs in reaching an educational market that is highly diffused and entrenched. What are really useful are the eight practical insights for social entrepreneurs.
Here is a brief glimpse into the insights:
- Social mission: JUMP Math’s social mission resonates and was measureable.
- Competitive advantage: JUMP Math’s difference is its strength: Being a social enterprise is recognizable and offers an edge over competitors. Their challenges led them to develop a unique management style that they termed, disciplined opportunism.
- Operations: Its founder recognized the need for strong talent in the operations of the enterprise. He made sure to create a team that could manage the operations, allowing him to stay focused on what he did best.
- Board of trustees: It is important to have a clear board structure where responsibilities are clearly defined. This was key in the early stages of growth when operational dollars were scarce.
- Talent management: Align talent with your organizational goals.
- Organization and team management: Build organizational objectives as a team. It is important to have agreement on what the organization wants to do and how it will get there.
- Finances: Jump Math’s ability to use philanthropic dollars in combination with revenue generation has enabled it to do more.
- Sustainability: Now that JUMP Math has adopted a mixed-model, philanthropic donors are even more interested in supporting the organization because it is on track to becoming self- sustainable in its core operations – something many donors look for.
Through the support of passionate teachers and partners, as well as a vision and confidence that students have tremendous potential, this social enterprise has seen amazing growth, and there are plans to continue the momentum.
Meet Ewart Newton, Vice President of Development of Jump Math at the Social Finance Forum 2015 Event on November 13th, 2015. This practitioner-focused inside look at the promise and challenge of social entrepreneurship will feature key themes Trico has identified, a brief panel discussion with three of the award-winning organizations, and a Q&A with the audience. This session, which will also feature the founders of Embers Staffing Solutions and TurnAround Couriers, will appeal to anyone dedicated to moving past the theory of using markets to directly address social challenges and on to the ‘how to’ – from Entrepreneurs to Foundations, Investors, Private Sector, the Public Sector, and those who can appreciate the occasional classic movie quote. Click here to sign up.