The Center for Entrepreneurship at Lewis & Clark College is a creative hub that invites passionate students, faculty, alumni, mentors, and other professionals into collaborations that engage and utilize entrepreneurial thinking to reframe problems, recognize opportunities and invent solutions.
In 2014 fall class, EINV 241 Methods and Applications of Entrepreneurship, students were asked to interview an entrepreneur or an entrepreneurially-minded individual who is creating impact in their area. They were asked to analyze the individual’s effort though an ‘effectuation’ lens, and think critically about how it’s worked and things the individual might consider.
We were proud that L&C student Jhana Valentine chose to profile REV CEO Elliot Hoffman.
Below is an excerpt. You can download and read her complete research paper here.
Leaders in all sectors of business are beginning to adopt social responsibility and sustainability as guiding principles. This is a dramatic change from the traditional business practices, where profit maximization guides decision-making. One way companies are making this shift is to expand the traditional, profit-based bottom line to a ‘triple bottom line’, which puts people, planet and profit as the guiding principles for a business (Elkington, 2004). In a market-driven economy, this can be a challenging way to structure a business. Yet examples such as TOMS shoes, Ben & Jerry’s, and Patagonia, have demonstrated that prioritizing social and environmental goals along with financial goals is not only possible, but can even enhance success.
In 1974, Elliot Hoffman was working alongside companies such as these in pioneering what sustainable and socially responsible business looks like today. At the young age of 26, Hoffman started the company Just Desserts, a bakery and catering business that grew to be acclaimed in the Bay area. Along the way, Hoffman experienced first hand the difficulties of minimizing waste, as well as the benefits of taking time to find solutions. Through this process of starting a business, Hoffman developed the expertise and passion for social responsibility that led him to pursue his next business venture.