Solve Problems That Matter​

Design, Build & Launch Your Social Enterprise Idea

by Ben Pecotich

Solve Problems That Matter book

The Journey

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Buy Solve Problems That Matter. The print paperback and high-quality PDF bundle provides the best reading experience for most people. Other formats/bundles are available.

Free Resources

The book is supported by free resources, including downloadable worksheets, video content, articles, books, and events. Coming soon…

Extra Support

If you want some extra support on your social enterprise journey, we can help with coaching and advice for individuals and teams.

Have fun while you solve problems that matter!

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Solve Problems That Matter is a 90-day program helping you take a human-centred approach to design, build, and launch your social enterprise idea – and build momentum

Solve Problems That Matter book print & PDF bundle

Print Paperback & High-Quality PDF Bundle

$79.99 (free shipping in Australia)

This print paperback and high-quality PDF bundle provides the best reading experience for most people and includes free digital updates.

The PDF and FREE downloadable worksheets are available for immediate download after checkout. Free shipping in Australia of print copies using Sendle’s compostable packaging and carbon neutral deliveries.

Want to order 10 books or more or need help with a better shipping price, please get in touch!

Other formats/bundles available:
Print Paperback  |  High-Quality PDF eBook/ePub  |  3 Format Bundle

Available from a range of international online retailers. You get the best price buying direct, but for cheaper delivery that’s faster and has less carbon impact, I recommend a local retailer when buying outside Australia. The PDF format is exclusive to this site, but you get a 50% discount with proof of purchase of the print format.

What People Are Saying...

Teaser Preview

This is the free teaser preview of Solve Problems That Matter. The purpose is to give you a flavour of the approach I take, how it works, and my style. It includes the full intro, parts of some chapters, the opening of Parts 1, 2, 3 & 4 – with the full table of contents, sprint focus, and the big questions covered in each.

Who is Solve Problems That Matter For?

I’ve coached thousands of founders, leaders, designers, and university students to design and innovate for positive impact over the years – so I’m focusing on these people and the key goals, questions, and challenges they face

This book is for you if you are a:

Social enterprise founder

Social enterprise founder in the early stages of exploring your idea

Startup founder

Startup founder wanting to embed purpose and impact in your business model

Leader or changemaker

Leader or changemaker in an established social enterprise, NFP, or purpose-driven organisation creating a solution that delivers on your core purpose while generating sustainable earned income

If you’re just starting work on your idea, have been going for years but aren’t making the progress you want, or designing and building a new solution within an established organisation – this book is for you. Innovation never stops.

Your Goals

Designing, building, and launching your social enterprise idea can be a very rewarding experience… but there are also plenty of challenges

Solve Problems That Matter will help you with these goals:

Take a human-centred design approach to innovation to really understand my customers, what’s important to them, and help solve problems that matter

Design a sustainable business model that has purpose and impact embedded in the way we do things while also being financially successful

Look after my own personal wellbeing while making a positive impact

Have a practical guide and method to follow so I can build momentum and get the support I need

How It Works

My ambition is that as we work through this book together, you’ll feel that I’m with you and working alongside you. Cheering you on, but also helping to challenge you, to test and refine your thinking, and iterate – to succeed sooner.

Let’s work together to solve problems that matter!

Philosophy & approach

I want you to be happy.

My focus is design and innovation for happier communities. It’s important to me that you enjoy this journey and stay healthy and well… ideally feeling even healthier as you do work that gives you meaning and fulfilment.

I strongly believe – and the evidence shows – that when we take a human-centred design approach to innovation and embed impact into business models, it helps create the conditions for people to be happier and have increasing quality of life.

Good business needs to do great things for communities and our planet, while being financially successful… it’s increasingly what talent, customers, and investors expect.

I frame social enterprise as something we do rather than something we are.

This is not an academic deep dive into theory and frameworks – I cover theory to a practical level needed for how we’ll apply it, using a learning through doing approach. It’s also not a duplication of other frameworks and methods  I refer to other useful books and resources for more information on various models, tools, and research.

90-day plan

Solve Problems That Matter is a simple and practical guidebook with worksheets structured around a 90-day (13-week) plan – with a Sprint 0 and five execution sprints to build momentum through the double diamond. You’ll adapt the timeline to your personal situation where needed as part of planning in Sprint 0.

Solve Problems That Matter program
Together we’ll work through the big questions I consistently hear… how do I/we:
  • Communicate our purpose, theory of change, and the social/environmental value we’ll create?
  • Identify our customers, understand what they really care about, and know if they’ll buy and use our solution?
  • Design, build, and launch our solution as an end-to-end experience, and test what our customers will pay for it?
  • Calculate how much money we need, and when we’ll break even?
  • Build our team to make it happen?
  • Plan our approach to get into a good rhythm to build momentum and get traction?
  • Share our story to attract the support we need?

High-level outline

The free teaser preview of Solve Problems That Matter covers this in details with the focus of each part with the big questions covered and how this aligns to the sprints.

Part 1: Setting the Scene

1. Mindset
2. Approach & Philosophy
3. Make It Happen
4. Purpose, Vision & Theory of Change

Part 2: People, Problem & Context

5. Current State
6. Customer Research
7. Market Research
8. Make Sense

Part 3: Solution & Business Model

 9. Explore Possible Solutions
10. Prototype, Test & Learn
11. Pricing
12. Financials
13. Legals

Part 4: Sustain Momentum

14. Bring It All Together
15. Momentum
16. Share Your Story
17. Get Support

Benefits​

My aim with this book is to help more social enterprise founders, NFP leaders, and changemakers globally solve problems that matter by taking a human-centred design approach to innovation

This book will help you with:

Focus

Time and headspace to work on the right things at the right time while staying healthy and positive on the journey – not overwhelmed and burnt out​

Clarity

Guided path to design a sustainable business model that has purpose and impact embedded and is financially successful​

Confidence

Build momentum and move forward with more certainty and less risk by testing and refining your idea and impact

Relationships

Support on the journey and ways to connect with collaborators and investors in the social enterprise ecosystem

Solve Problems That Matter is based on my experience coaching thousands of founders, leaders, designers, and university students over the years – especially social enterprise founders and NFP leaders on our Jetpack program since 2014.

It also draws on the project-based experiential leadership, design, and innovation programs I’ve designed and delivered… and the many social enterprise startups I’ve co-founded.

Ben Pecotich: A Bit About Me

Why me? To answer this, I need to nudge aside my impostor syndrome – though it never really goes away. I’m a designer, innovation coach, and social enterprise/startup founder. Since starting in financial services in 1993, I’ve focused on taking a human-centred approach to designing and leading strategic change in Australia, NZ, the UK, and Europe – combining strategy, design, technology, consulting, and program management. I co-founded my first startup in 1994, and have been working on startups and social enterprises ever since.

I’m also co-founder of the Sydney Design Thinking meetup (8,000+ members), a founding board member and treasurer of the Social Enterprise Council of NSW & ACT (SECNA), and a Social Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Centre for Social Impact/UNSW Business School teaching masters students.

Dynamic4

I founded Dynamic4 in 2001. We’re a social enterprise and certified B Corp focused on design and innovation for happier communities. We also run an incubator for early-stage social enterprise ideas called Dynamic4 Jetpack.

I spend my time coaching founders and leaders to solve problems that matter and deliver great outcomes for people and our planet while being financially successful. Over the years, I’ve had the privilege of coaching thousands of founders, leaders, designers, and university students to design and innovate for positive impact.

My Purpose & Vision

My vision is a world where organisations and leaders solve problems that matter in more empathic and innovative ways – and measure success in outcomes for people, our planet, and prosperity… so people and communities have increasing quality of life, are happier, and live on a planet that is cleaner and healthier.

All the work I do is aligned with my purpose and theory of change – focused on helping create the conditions for people and communities to be more empowered and inclusive, and live in more sustainable ways.

I don’t pretend to know everything or have all the answers, but I do my best to be a trusted partner and guide to make things easier. I’ve been through this rollercoaster of a journey myself many times and coached others through it.

Through these experiences I’ve built the mindset, skillset, and know how to use the tools to help others work through and make sense of the ambiguity and complexity to find clarity. And I love it.

Behind the Scenes

The making of… I’ve been sharing my story as I’ve progressed, the many lessons I’m learning, and opportunities to get involved.  You can follow the story here.