A Storytelling Platform for Social Entrepreneurs, Elisa Birnbaum, SEE Change Magazine

SEE Change Magazine is a global digital magazine focused on social entrepreneurship and social change.

See Change Magazine Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, Elisa Birnbaum

Elisa Birnbaum, SEE Change Magazine

Like most people I speak to, Elisa Birnbaum’s career path was circuitous. She studied political science and law. “I was going to save the world as a human rights lawyer, of course,” she says tongue-in-cheek. But along the way, she found that she had a gift for writing. When she graduated from law school, she told herself, “I’m going to take some time off to see what this thing called storytelling is all about.” That was more than 15 years ago.

Elisa honed her journalistic skills with several organizations. Her portfolio includes articles for the Globe & Mail, Toronto Star, Profit, Zoomer, Elle Canada, iVillage, Microsoft Home, Lifestyles, Dreamscapes, and Via Destinations. She was a TV Producer for TV Ontario. She was a writer and producer for the CBC / Radio-Canada. And she is a regular contributor to the National Post.

In 2008, Elisa was a writer for CharityVillage. Nicole Zummach was her editor. At the time, the economy was taking a downturn. Philanthropic giving was down. The government was cutting back on funding. Charities were scrambling to find new business models. Elisa and Nicole found themselves writing about social entrepreneurship. “This was a nice alternative and a smart way to help [nonprofits] in their challenges.”

When Elisa pitched the stories of social entrepreneurs to several publications, the uptake was slow. “It was hard to get mainstream media to say ‘Hey, yeah that’s a good story. Let’s put that in.’ We just looked at each other one day and said, ‘We’ve got to get these stories out.’” So, in 2009, Elisa and Nicole launched SEE Change Magazine. Elisa is the publisher and Editor-in-Chief.

SEE Change Magazine is a global digital magazine focused on social entrepreneurship and social change. They provide content on issues affecting the world of social entrepreneurship. They profile inspiring individuals using business ventures to transform their communities and the world.

Elisa expanded their offerings through SEE Change Communications. They offer workshops, communications services and consulting services to help social enterprises to develop and tell their social change story. They host speaking events where social entrepreneurs can tell their stories.

Elisa also offers an excellent podcast called In the Business of Change. And, if that were not enough, Elisa is also working on a new book. “The book is not just going to highlight social entrepreneurs. But it’s going to focus on lessons learned.”

Social Entrepreneurship Quotes from Elisa Birnbaum

[spp-tweet tweet=”“A lot of people didn’t get it.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag”]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“Business and tech stuff were never my things.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“I got sidetracked. I really enjoyed writing.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“I love storytelling in all its different forms.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“I think I always had an ability to write.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

“What I always had was a curiosity for people.”

[spp-tweet tweet=”“Social enterprise became my strongest niche.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“I try to keep opinions out of it.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“Media can be a real force for good.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“Storytelling is imperative to people meeting their mission.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“If your story’s not getting out there, you’re not getting much done.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“It all comes back to the same idea of helping social entrepreneurs to succeed.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“A podcast is a different way of getting these stories out.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

“You want to feel relevant. You want to feel you’re making a difference.”

“Funding is incredibly difficult.”

[spp-tweet tweet=”“Passion is beautiful, but you need more than that.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“It’s not enough to have a good story.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

[spp-tweet tweet=”“Do it. Because it’s worth it.” @ElisaBirnbaum, @SEEChangemag“]

Social Entrepreneurship Resources:

About the Author
Tony Loyd is a TEDx speaker, podcast host and the author of Crazy Good Advice: 10 Lessons Learned from 150 Leading Social Entrepreneurs. He is a former Fortune 500 executive with extensive experience in strategic planning, talent management, and leadership development. Tony is the host of the podcast Social Entrepreneur where you can hear the stories of changemakers who are making an impact on the world.

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