NatWest SE100 Health & Fitness report
The NatWest SE100 Health & Fitness Report presents a snapshot of the UK social enterprise movement just before the Covid-19 pandemic emerged.
Published mid-2020, our special report explores two things: first, how the top UK social enterprises in the NatWest SE100 were performing before the Covid crisis, in terms of sales, profits and impact; second, the levels of confidence among social business leaders before the crisis, about the future of their enterprises and the challenges they were facing.
Tim West, founding editor of Pioneers Post, commented: “Although this survey dates back to the months immediately before Covid-19, it’s important for us to learn about the performance and confidence of the UK’s best social enterprises, what has been keeping their leaders awake at night and their sources of support and inspiration.
“As we emerge from the crisis into a very different world, we hope that these findings can remind us of the achievements of our top social enterprises just a few months ago, and also provide a helpful benchmark when we look at the impact of Covid-19 in the months of recovery and revival that must lie ahead.”
As we emerge from the crisis into a very different world, we hope that these findings can remind us of the achievements of our top social enterprises
An impressive 92% of those surveyed last year in our business insight survey said their past year (pre-Covid) had gone well – 16% said it had been “absolutely brilliant”, 8% said their year had been worse than expected and nobody said it had been a disaster.
But the report also reveals the stresses of running a social business imposed on founders and leaders. Some 40% told us that they had considered giving up at some point during the development of their enterprise. Asked what worries kept them awake at night, poor finances and being under-appreciated or under-supported were key issues.
Some 88% of those surveyed said they had achieved their social mission, while 64% were optimistic about the future and 32% were aiming to attract new investment.
Asked about the main barriers to growth, 34% pointed to cashflow and 44% were threatened by staffing issues.
The report also includes valuable advice from social enterprise CEOs.
“Focusing on your impact can be a really good lift to your spirits when they are flagging in tough times,” said one.
Another commented: “No matter how many people turn up, remember you are doing things from a good place and if you impact one person that is enough.”
Read more in the full report, available for download via the button below.
The SE100 – created by Pioneers Post in partnership with NatWest – is an annual programme of awards, shared learning, storytelling and networking designed to support UK social enterprises. Learn more about the SE100 in our collection.