Entrepreneurs create jobs and build communities
Ernst & Young is well known in the marketplace as a friend to entrepreneurs. Our Strategic Growth Markets practice has helped many of the world’s most dynamic young companies grow into industry leaders. The Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® Award, which celebrates successful entrepreneurs in 50 countries, is the most prestigious award of its kind. Google, IKEA and Starbucks are all former Entrepreneur Of The Year winners.
Working with and supporting entrepreneurs has given us a profound understanding of the value of entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurs create jobs and transform communities as well as industries. And entrepreneurs are extremely resourceful in both good times and bad. A recent study by the Kauffman Foundation highlighted that more than half of the companies on the 2009 Fortune 500 were founded during a recession or bear market.
We encourage our people to donate their skills to smaller ventures that otherwise could not access such sophisticated advice – but that still have the potential to contribute significantly to the economy of a household, a village or an entire nation.
Below are several examples of the efforts we’re making to support and celebrate entrepreneurs around the globe.
Corporate Responsibility Fellows program
This competitive program sends high-performing Ernst & Young people to high-impact entrepreneurs in Central and South America for multi-week assignments. Fellows’ projects (video) are designed to improve the integrity and effectiveness of the entrepreneurs’ key business processes and to use the unique skills of each of our professionals.
Meet our CR Fellows
The Corporate Responsibility Fellows Program has a significant impact — both on our Fellows, by offering them a world-class professional growth opportunity, and on entrepreneurs and their communities, by helping to catalyze economic growth. A few examples:
- Alene, a Transaction Advisory Services manager, helped Buin Zoo establish improved processes for budgeting and cash flow monitoring. Read more.
- Jared, an Assurance manager, helped create a financial reporting and performance management system for a Chilean manufacturer of software products.
- Scott, an Advisory manager, worked with a Chilean company that uses laser technology to measure raw materials in the timber trucking industry, assisting them in identifying processes for expansion and new product development, as well as introducing a balanced scorecard to track their progress.
- Trusha, an inclusiveness consultant with Ernst & Young’s People Team, developed a human resource strategy for an innovative business in Montevideo, Uruguay, that provides road accident prevention and risk management services.
Best practices in international corporate volunteering
The CR Fellows Program was featured in an independent study conducted by FSG Social Impact Advisors, Volunteering for Impact: Best Practices in International Corporate Volunteering. As noted by the study, the CR Fellows Program leverages "its most valuable assets to help promising entrepreneurs create sustainable economic value" and is one of the top corporate approaches to making a positive impact abroad.
A focus on in high-impact entrepreneurs
We work with Endeavor, a respected non-profit organization in the field of entrepreneurship, to place our CR Fellows with high-impact entrepreneurs that have a proven track record for delivering exceptional value in terms of both revenue growth and job creation, and are a source of innovation in the market. The entrepreneurs we assist through the program generally employ more than 200 people. They create long-term value: the companies Endeavor works with have a 96% survival rate over ten years, while most emerging market entrepreneurs are in business for 42 months or less. In addition, 80% of Endeavor entrepreneurs invest in research and development, and at least half have secured, or are in the process of securing, patents.
The Social Entrepreneur Of The Year Award
Ernst & Young, in collaboration with the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship (an affiliate of the World Economic Forum), presents the Social Entrepreneur of the Year award in five countries to business leaders who successfully apply practical, innovative and market-oriented approaches to benefit the marginalized and the poor.
Volunteers teach kids about entrepreneurship
Our commitment to entrepreneurship includes helping youth become interested in professional careers and creating their own businesses. Watch this video to see more than 70 volunteers from our St. Louis office leading Junior Achievement classes at a middle school in St. Louis, MO, inspiring kids to aim for college and learn about the business world.
Please note: Ernst & Young does not accept unsolicited requests for funding or volunteer engagements.