14 Jan Opportunities not Necessity should drive Entrepreneurship
Entrepreneurs are often hailed as the saviors of economies and catalysts for innovation and disruption but there is a huge caveat to that statement that gets overlooked for the feel-good factor that the aforementioned statement brings. The caveat is that economic growth relies heavily on job creation and the effortless flow of money through industries, this does not happen unless entrepreneurs create enterprises that harness people and technology to create the innovation synonymous with entrepreneurship.
The commonly accepted definition of entrepreneurship in academia is that of Peter Drucker, who postulated that “This defines entrepreneur and entrepreneurship – the entrepreneur always searches for change, responds to it, and exploits it as an opportunity.” Nowhere in that statement, is there a referral to…”because there is no other option of employment…” that the entrepreneur then actions all the steps mentioned by Drucker. In a country so stricken by unemployment and an underperforming economy, it is ill-informed to shift the attention of policymakers to create entrepreneurs. For what is actually being created are vehicles of self-employment that are put under the pressure of investors and government agencies to scale, when the people and the ideas are only geared to support themselves.
Real change and real results in economic activity linked to new venture creation and jobs are not going to be reliant on those that have no other option but to buy for 1 and sell for 2. They are going to rely on those that take action, and not just any action. Three definitive actions.
1. Searching for change
2. Responding to the changes found
3. Exploiting an opportunity
A market saturated with copy-cat self-employed individuals trying to compete over the same customers in the same industries cause unnecessary strain on funding and investment institutions and an overloaded bureaucracy resulting in excessive hoops for business qualification. Less businesses are funded because so many ideas are backed by those needing to start a business to stay alive rather than catalyzing change through opportunity awareness.
By starting with the problem of unemployment and trying to solve it with turning all those without jobs into entrepreneurs, the government and the “higher-ups” are dumbing down the discipline of entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs are born out of way of thinking, born of the development of behavior traits and manifested in action. If you start with that and then scaffold the knowledge and skills of starting and running a scalable business, it will result in the economic growth we so desperately need.
When the national soccer team is not performing to the global standard, the coaches and managers don’t tell the country that they can all be soccer players and make them attend soccer lessons? The scouts head out and look for a considerable amount of talent and invest in select individuals until they are performing at their peak and impacting positively on the team.
The country and the economy don’t need self-employed people with survival instincts to create the momentum needed to lift people out this current state, they need entrepreneurs with scalable mindsets and ideas that will employ hundreds and possibly thousands of people. Hail those people as the saviors!