Clay Water Brick: Finding Inspiration from Entrepreneurs Who Do the Most with the Least

book cover - Clay Water Brick

Clay Water Brick: Finding Inspiration from Entrepreneurs Who Do the Most with the Least

By Jessica Jackley, MBA ’07
Spiegel & Grau, June 23, 2015

“The greatest entrepreneurs succeed not because of what they possess but because of what they are determined to do.”

An inspiring story of social entrepreneurship from the cofounder of Kiva, the first online microlending platform for the working poor. Featuring lessons learned from successful businesses in the world’s poorest countries, Jessica Jackley’s Clay Water Brick will motivate readers to more deeply appreciate the incredible entrepreneurial potential that exists in every human being on this planet - especially themselves.

Meet Patrick, who had next to nothing and started a thriving business using just the ground beneath his feet. Blessing, who built her shop right in the middle of the road, refusing to take the chance that her customers might pass her by. Constance, who cornered the banana market in her African village with her big personality and sense of mission.

Patrick, Blessing, Constance, and many others are among the poorest of the world’s poor. And yet they each had crucial lessons to teach Jessica Jackley - lessons about resilience, creativity, perseverance, and, above all, entrepreneurship.

For as long as she could remember, Jackley, the cofounder of the revolutionary microlending site Kiva, had a singular and urgent ambition: to help alleviate global poverty. While in her twenties, she set off for Africa to finally meet the people she had long dreamed of helping. The insights of those she met changed her understanding. Today she believes that many of the most inspiring entrepreneurs in the world are not focused on high-tech ventures or making a lot of money; instead, they wake up every day and build better lives for themselves, their families, and their communities, regardless of the things they lack or the obstacles they encounter.

In Clay Water Brick, Jackley challenges readers to embrace entrepreneurship as a powerful force for change in the world. She shares her own story of founding Kiva with little more than a laptop and a dream and the stories and the lessons she has learned from those across the globe who are doing the most with the least.

Selected Editorial Reviews
With only a dream and a lot of determination, Jessica Jackley founded Kiva, an organization that has empowered millions of people around the world. Clay Water Brick is the inspiring story of her own far-flung journeys as an entrepreneur, but it’s also a blueprint for anyone who wants to make the world a better place and find fulfillment in the process, no matter how scarce their resources or how steep the challenge.
Arianna Huffington
Jessica Jackley didn’t wait for permission to change the world-she just did it. It turns out that you can too.
Seth Godin, author of What to Do When It’s Your Turn
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