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Be part of a virtual social hackathon.

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We are looking for social organizations to join an upcoming BNP Paribas Social Enterprise Hackathon.

Are you a social entrepreneur or leader in a purpose-driven organization? You are invited to apply for an upcoming virtual event dedicated to supporting leaders like you with your urgent and significant business challenges. This event, taking place online 14-17 May 2024, represents a real opportunity to work alongside diverse leadership talent from BNP Paribas to gain new perspectives and insights on your work.

Now more than ever companies are facing exceptional challenges — working virtually, supporting staff remotely, engaging with clients in new ways, facing financial insecurity and dealing with uncertainty. The experience will help you develop  creative, and successful strategies to challenges facing your organization.

Partners who participate see the following benefits:

  • Participation in a programme that delivers outcomes and impact
  • Opportunity to stop and do real work on a challenge that is important to the problem presenter and the organization
  • Chance to leverage a proven action-learning process that harnesses the diversity and intellect offered by the diversity of the assigned team

What type of social organization can apply?

We are looking for committed social entrepreneurs who are interested in moving a challenge forward in a unique working format that allows for both real results and leadership development. It’s important that the organizations that we select self-identify as social businesses and can demonstrate their social value. Priority will be given to registered social enterprises. While newly formed, not yet profitable, organizations can make strong partners for this experience, it is important that the partners we work with have clear commitment to their social purpose. Problem presenters who attend should be open to new perspectives on their challenge and have a willingness to take new input on board.

This event is being held during the European CET workday. Applicants are welcome from outside this time zone and area, but participation during the European workday will be required.

What types of challenges should you bring?

Partner organizations wishing to participate in the Social Enterprise Hackathon need to identify a significant and urgent business or leadership challenge to be addressed during the program.  This challenge should be one that is complex and for which there could be many potential solutions. Examples include:


  • A change in business model
  • A strategic leadership decision
  • A new product offer or service offer
  • Diversifying revenue streams in a changing business environment
  • A marketing or communications plan
  • Rethinking a process (HR or other)
  • Reorganization of a department / organization chart

What is the level of commitment?

ected social partners will need to identify a ‘problem presenter’ from the organization with ownership of the challenge, who can commit completely to the following:


  • Attend a one-hour introductory briefing call with BNP Paribas and Be Leadership to learn more about the experience
  • Once participation is confirmed, attend a one-hour connection call with the coach you’ll be working with to help to define the challenge that will be in focus, and discuss plans for the immersion
  • Participate actively throughout the virtual workshop, all day Tuesday 14 May, Wednesday 15 May, Thursday 16 May and Friday 17 May via Microsoft Teams. During much of this time, you will work on your identified business challenge in a small action learning group. The agenda over the four days balances action learning sessions of 90-120 minutes, breaks and lunches to accommodate working virtually. On Thursday afternoon and Friday morning, your assigned team will work on completing agreed deliverables and preparing a summary of this work to present to the broader group on Friday afternoon.
  • Host a virtual immersion activity for 7-9 leadership talent on Tuesday 14 May 14:00-17:00 CET. This will be held via Microsoft Teams with a goal to help participants understand your organization, business model and purpose prior to working on your challenge. The virtual immersion could include videos of the organization, introducing people in the organisation, recorded or live interviews with people who the organization has supported/helped and a tour of the offices/locations as examples.  The objective is to provide context and background to your work and emotionally engage the participants around your mission and vision in preparation for working together.
  • As a follow up to the experience, problem presenters will have an opportunity to reconnect with their working group after six months to share progress and outcomes.

Find out more

Please get in touch today to register your interest and learn more about the event. We’ll send you an application form and more details. Applications close 15th March 2024.

Frequently asked questions

Do we need to have an emotionally engaging social purpose?

Groups engage best when they can understand and relate to the purpose of the organization and can clearly see its social impact. It’s important that the organizations we work with self-identify as social businesses and can articulate a passion around their social value.

Do we need to have a real and urgent business problem to work on?

Yes. This is essential. This should be something that is unsolved and important to the organization. The participants come from diverse parts of the business and we want to take them outside their comfort zone as part of this experience, thus we are looking for non-financial challenges. You should not expect participants to be subject matter experts in their challenge domain.

Can you tell me more about action learning?

Action Learning is a process that involves a small group working on real problems, taking action, and learning as individuals, as a team, and as an organization. It helps organizations develop creative, flexible and successful strategies to pressing problems. Action learning is an inquiry-based method and leverages diversity by allowing all participants to use powerful questions to bring new perspectives to challenges. This allows non-subject matter experts to add immense value. As a problem presenter, you will leave the hackathon with a powerful tool and new skills you can use in your organization. You can learn more about action learning on

What if our problem presenter isn’t available for the whole experience? Can we still be involved?

The Social Enterprise Hackathon creates a real partnership between the partner organizations and the action learning team and they work together on solving the problem. Therefore, to get value from this experience, the problem presenter must be available for the full commitment described.

Do we need to be a registered social enterprise?

While we focus on helping participants understand the societal benefits of the social enterprise model and these organizations are given priority, we are open to working with other purpose-driven organizations including non-profits.

Do we need to be an existing partner of BNP Paribas?

While we are looking to enhance existing strategic partnerships, we are also open to working with new social partners.

Thank-you Thank-you Thank-you! What an incredible experience. So grateful for the opportunity and in such a positive frame of mind heading into 2022! Amazing work by all! 


The Be Leadership model is great in linking business with the charity sector, incorporating leadership development while solving a real problem.


Watch the experiences of past participants and partners