How To Define Entrepreneurial Spirit

The entrepreneurial spirit is often difficult to define let alone examine in detail because of its perception as a highly creative and dynamic entity and it is with this caveat that this article is written.

Whilst the entrepreneurial spirit can be applied to a wide range of disciplines and professionals it is perhaps most closely associated with the world of business and incorrectly used to describe many successful business people, when in fact very few individuals can truly demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit.

Historical Context of the meaning of entrepreneur

The word itself is French in origin and if interpreted in its literal context means “between jobs”. It is interesting that a word that has come to project the very pinnacle of success should have such mundane roots as a means of describing being unemployed.

This article examines a number of concepts that appear intrinsic to what constitutes entrepreneurial spirit

1. Uniqueness

In a highly developed global business community where new ideas and business models are increasingly in short supply the importance of uniqueness cannot be under estimated and those exhibiting an entrepreneurial spirit are often associated with concepts that encapsulate originality and ingenuity. Take for example, Steve Jobs bringing the Apple IPOD to the market,

2. Creativity

Creativity is heavily connected to uniqueness but the two are not identical. Individuals with an entrepreneurial spirit are experienced at harnessing the creative process to help them produce a unique product /service or advantage. So where as uniqueness describes the end outcome, creativity describes the process of how one achieves it. For this reason those with an entrepreneurial spirit are often creative individuals who are ready, willing and able to actively adopt new techniques to get ahead even at the expense of being ridiculed by others.

3. Risk Taking

In a western society that is so often risk averse, those with entrepreneurial spirit embrace risk taking and it is impossible for such a concept not to be associated with entrepreneurs and the often high risk potential involved in following a new cutting edge approach. It must be observed however that risk is not the same as recklessness and those demonstrating an entrepreneurial spirit are likely to be adept at assessing the risks involved in any undertaking.

4. Business Savy

As highlighted previously those with entrepreneurial spirit should not be considered as reckless mavericks indeed quite the opposite, good entrepreneurs are motivated by profit and are skilled at identifying a lucrative niche in the market that can be exploited for profit. Take for example, Steve Jobs at Apple Computers who has successfully navigated a profitable course in the computing and software industry despite the market being dominated by Microsoft and IBM for a number of decades. In addition he was the first to spot the potential of utilising the computing industry to open a new market to the music fraternity , with the introduction of the IPOD, the market leader in its business stream. Such actions requires great skill and confidence and demonstrate a clear entrepreneurial spirit.

5. Developing Potential

Identifying, Investing in and nurturing potential are also essential to the ideals attached associated with entrepreneurial spirit because of the need to find differing solutions to a business problem.

Established businesses often fail to discover breakthroughs because they stick to a rigid investment formula that has worked for them in the past rather than finding new ways of moving forward.

6. Adaptability

The entrepreneurial spirit is always adaptable and ready to overcome barriers presented by business problems and is usually quicker at resolving those issues than mainstream business thinkers.

7. Ultimately Destructive

Entrepreneurial spirit is ultimately destructive to its own business in the medium term unless those engaged in utilizing the concept recognize when it is time to handover to mainstream management focussed individuals who can maintain and develop the organisation. This is because true entrepreneurial spirit is obsessed with constant creativity and change which is unsettling to employees without good management and a clear direction. Many of those demonstrating entrepreneurial spirit rarely stay long term in any enterprise they undertake, take Richard Branson for example who after launching numerous businesses under the “Virgin” brand has subsequently sold on many of these to third parties at a huge profit to himself.

Summary

In conclusion whilst there are certainly key characteristics which encapsulate the entrepreneurial spirit it would be foolish to pretend that any one individual has all those traits and even more foolish to believe that such a concept can be comprehensively defined. It is also short sighted to believe that those with entrepreneurial spirit are only evident in the business community, indeed many different disciplines and vocations have historical and existing individuals contained within them that could be essentially described as entrepreneurs.

Why Entrepreneurial?

Entrepreneurial development lies on the notion of creativity and innovation. An idea is said to be creative when it is novel. That creative idea becomes innovative when it turns into something useful – a product. Entrepreneurship is underpinned by external factors, or all external factors. Any condition in the external environment whether favorable or unfavorable is a source of entrepreneurial development. Technological, social, cultural, political, and economic factors are sources of entrepreneurship. The fast-paced technology poses opportunities. During economic downturn or boom, the market is always confronted with needs and demands. The political, societal, and cultural changes give rise to new, untapped demands. These require entrepreneurial minds. The changes in these factors create new problems that require new solutions. These solutions are then translated into products. Any product that solves a particular problem of the market will create customer value proposition. What the market values will prosper in a highly competitive market.

As mentioned, there can be no external factors that hinder entrepreneurial development. What makes them a hindrance is when they are not taken as opportunities. Even a crisis can be an opportunity to be entrepreneurial. Apparently, blunders to entrepreneurial development are more of internal than external. What lack many to become entrepreneurs are entrepreneurial passion and spirit. Others fail to become entrepreneurial even when they take the initial steps because they fail to plan. They are oblivious that entrepreneurship is a risk-taking activity. When they fail, they have no plans to take the risks and hold back from re-trying. Entrepreneurial spirit must be sustained.

Conflicting ideas are present about when and where to germinate the seeds of entrepreneurial spirit. The academe is a pillar of education in the field of business. The industry is a good training ground for entrepreneurs-to-be to develop soft and hard skills. To create future entrepreneurs, the academe should instill the entrepreneurial mastery. The academic culture is important to nurture a cohort of future entrepreneurs. Educators can play a great role to motivate students pursue entrepreneurship. They might lay down the choices and teach their students to use their perceptive powers in determining which course to take. A good background of the industry is helpful to see realities and eventually delve into entrepreneurship or directly engage oneself to entrepreneurial activities. This is a matter of choice. Educators must guide the protégés and do not allow themselves to choose for other people.

A student with a proper training can responsibly choose to be entrepreneurial or not. Self-mastery is vital to know one’s passion. Success in entrepreneurship predominantly depends on the entrepreneurs’ inclination and exposure. Technology speeds up forward. Changes in the external environment are constant. But what turns them into opportunities is the entrepreneurial mind.

Benefits of Joining an Entrepreneurial Organization

Perks. We all love them. From getting a free soda from the store our older brother worked at when we were younger, to the discounts we receive from our suppliers for being a valued customer. It’s what fuels our networking and what makes us reach out to organizations that bring value to forming a community. And in today’s tough economy, we need all the benefits and perks we can obtain, if only to give us that extra edge over our competition.

So, that’s what we can expect when joining an entrepreneurial organization. Perks. And some of the biggest perks come with the access granted to the biggest business opportunities around the world. This is due to the fact that many entrepreneurs form partnerships with organizations and companies in exchange for monetary support and other contributions of a similar nature. Sometimes these partners are large corporations, sometimes small businesses. Sometimes organizations form strategic alliances instead of partnerships. Either way, the benefits of such arrangements become clear and present when you become a member of a reputable entrepreneurial organization.

These partners will often offer discounts to members of entrepreneur networks as a way of saying “thank you” to its members. These help save both time and money, while lowering operational costs and increasing overall profit. And in this down-turn economy, that is no small advantage.

Keep this in mind when looking for an entrepreneurial organization. Make sure that the list of partners they are associated with are all reputable businesses and organizations with long, upstanding connections and reputations in the business world. You’ll want to see that the entrepreneurial organization takes pride in its name and who it associates itself with. Remember, any organization you attach your own name with, you are also attaching the names of all those that they attach their name to. This can be a very good thing if you choose wisely, a possible detrimental situation if you don’t.

But don’t only look for those big name corporations that can help you globally. Look for entrepreneurs who are locally involved in an entrepreneurial organization’s chapter. Small businesses are at the foundation of the free market and support from local entrepreneurs shows you that an organization has a strong community presence. Building a strong community of solidarity is tantamount towards keeping the local businesses striving and in sync with the hyper-local economy.

Finally, look for an entrepreneurial organization that has been offering exclusive partnerships for upwards of 15 years. This will ensure that their connections are rock solid and you will be offered a network that is both steady and influential. By having established themselves, the entrepreneurial organization will be able to provide you with growth and expansion opportunities into new sections of the world, increasing your revenue and range of productivity.

Well-established entrepreneur networks also carry more significant benefits and discounts, increasing both their value to you and in turn, your value to them. Don’t forget, becoming a member of an entrepreneurial organization works both ways. It is not only you that is benefiting from the organization, but the entrepreneurial organization that is benefitting from you as well. By accepting to associate themselves with your good name, they are adding to the network of entrepreneurs world-wide.
And that’s the way perks get started.

Benefits to all parties involved make for a sound and happy atmosphere within which positive growth can be stimulated and maintained for future generations. So, if you’re looking to get the most out of your networking, it is highly advised that you consider joining an entrepreneurial organization today, and start reaping the rewards and benefits from entrepreneurs like yourself.