Important note: This article is from the 7 Days of Trust Vault section. It was first published on november 04, 2012. 
The current economic context seems to be more publicized than ever, but this gives us the possibility to think creatively and to propose measures and actions through which we can involve actively in society. Thus comes Social Economy (SE) – a concept supported and promoted by the European Union.

Solidarity, balance, respect and initiative are some of the values of Social Economy. A stable national economy can be sustained by appreciating and taking advantage of the added value that each person can bring (this is also a short definition for SE). Added value can be defined as someone’s potential to perform a certain act or to conduct a certain social process with excellent results. Take for example a disabled person – someone who has difficulty walking. This kind of difficulty may be offset by the extraordinary ability of that person to be multilingual (there are cases of people with disabilites who know very well 3 or 4 foreign languages). Such added value would be a great benefit for an International Call Center.

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At the same time, a young person without any experience, if he/she is trained through an internship experience (of three/ six months or a year) and then is hired, may be a much more profitable investment than someone with senior-level experience, as that young person will identify with the values and principles of the company, being not just a simple employee but one devoted to the company’s objectives.  Even candidates may have concrete benefits if they act according to values and principles of Social Economy. For example, when a candidate submits their resume and cover letter they could take the initiative to suggest to the employer that he/she is available a period also for volunteering and if the results are those that the company expects, after that period to exist the possibility of an employment interview. Also a candidate may have the creativity to attach a PPT when submitting the application through email containing the manner through which he or she wants to involve in the company. Through this it can be seen that the candidate is well informed and has an organized plan. Contacting an employer by telephone is also a courageous initiative. These are just some of the measures which may facilitate employment.

Another important aspect for both employers and employees is that SE can exist through teamwork, therefore solidarity is the first value related to SE. Teamwork, in the context of Social Economy, involves not aggressive but rather constructive competition – like in a workout, the thing at which each member of the team can improve can be seen, as well as everybody’s limits/potential, so that everyone has the change to know their colleagues in order to find out how to work together.

Stability, health, safety, responsibility, patience, teamwork, attention, different opportunities depending on each individual profile and so on. These are values ​​and principles of life that perhaps each of us thinks at. Some people have the courage to promote and also to protect the integrity of this values and principles, others would like to do so and, of course, there are people who have a vague representation about it. It is important to note that by our actions we have the chance to offer optimism, courage and support in our society. The values ​​and principles mentioned are not only an activity through which we assure the functionality of a system because we are also promote a lifestyle. Maybe now someone ask themselves – “why to spend our time with such actions or what is the purpose of it?” and the answer might be: In order to better understand our needs, potential, limits. Thus homogeneity will soon appear, conflicts would be reduced and work would be more respected. We need homogeneity in Romania? What else our society might need? See, we already made a ​​progress – we think and process ideas that can make us more united, more competitive, closer to our own socio-cultural identity.

The conclusion is that through Social Economy exists the possibility to integrate everyone into the labour market, regardless of their socio-professional level. Schematically, we can summerize: SE → professional training → identification of skills → integration into the labour market → professional development → socio-professional autonomy.


Author: Mihai Silviu Botezatu

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