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Do you know that entrepreneurship plays a very critical role in the world today?
Holy Cow! If you could fully comprehend the full scope of the role of entrepreneurship, I believe you wouldn’t desire to be left behind in anything entrepreneurship. I feel energized as I write this blog now. This word ‘entrepreneur’ has quite some energy in it.
Countless people are searching for a product or service so often – and this impacts their standard of living and lifestyle. Don’t you agree? Economic development, including generation of income and wealth, increased government taxes and spending, employment etc. are just a few.
I guess you need to read 30 Importance and Role of Entrepreneurship In Economic Development in order to get the right perspective.
However, in today’s blog I’m not yapping about the importance of entrepreneurship.
I mentioned the critical role of entrepreneurship for one purpose. That purpose is the need to learn entrepreneurship – to further impact the world and humanity as seen above. I guess you know that there are literally zillions of people learning entrepreneurship today – with whatever approach and objective.
The question you and I should ask is this – are we learning entrepreneurship the right way?
This is the reason why I have compiled 9 Incredibly Good (Never Miss) Ways to Learn Entrepreneurship. I mean entrepreneurship in practice – not simply the theoretical knowledge but without practice.
If you read my recent article entitled: Can entrepreneurship be taught?, you should have got some ideas about the matter. In my opinion, just spending precious time trying to learn entrepreneurship the wrong way does not help anybody in this world.
Below I have compiled what – in my humble opinion – are the most useful and valuable ways to learn entrepreneurship. Let me show you now – and please don’t run away at this stage. Ok?
1. Start and run a business. Now, you would have thought of chasing me with a stick if I were near you at this moment. Candidly, the best way to learn entrepreneurship is to simply roll up your sleeves and face reality – start a business. Do you hear me?
Don’t only rely on the big academic entrepreneurship volumes you find in hard/soft cover, and also as eBooks. Very few of these have the street wisdom you need to start and successfully run a business. I guess this is why many business professors do not start and own enterprises.
At whatever level and in whatever way, if you want to really learn entrepreneurship – please start a business. Burn your fingers (as most likely you would) – but in the process you will know how to make a profit (smiling to the bank) or loss (when you have bled real money and you are reeling with anger).
Patricia G. Greene’s four approaches to teaching entrepreneurship as a method can be a useful guide here.
2. Get a business mentor and coach. This in my opinion is another tried and trusted approach to learn entrepreneurship, at all stages.
I believe that you know the difference between mentorship and coaching.
Mentoring is generally long-termed and development driven with the mentoring agenda guided by the mentee, as opposed to coaching which is generally short-term and directed at performance (structured training) instead of development, with the agenda set by the coach. Whatever the difference is, both of these are very useful in entrepreneurship learning.
Sheila Eugenio’s 7 reasons you need a mentor for entrepreneurial success highlights benefits such as more networking, higher possibility of success, reassurance and encouragement, gaining experience not shared in books (just confirms what I think) etc.
The above article also quotes research statistics indicating that up to 80 percent of CEOs said they received some form of mentorship, and 93 percent of startups admitting that mentorship is instrumental to success. Are you still following me by the way? Come on – we are discussing serious issues here.
An academic paper by Oxford Brookes University on The Contribution of Coaching and Mentoring emphasizes the value of transfer of skills (business acumen especially) in entrepreneurship education.
By the way, you don’t need to blame me for quoting academic papers. Ok? I’m basically buttressing my points – after all you can choose to take this seriously or not. At least I would have washed my hands anyway. Understood?
My point is this – you learn entrepreneurship better through mentorship and coaching.
3. Read books written by successful entrepreneurs. There are very nice entrepreneurship and business books written by people that have practiced entrepreneurship and have been successful at it.
I have read books written by people like Richard Branson and Jack Welch – and candidly there are very precious things there no professor will tell you while teaching you entrepreneurship. Why not try these?
The incredibly good thing about this is that you get practical knowledge, the business language, good ideas about scaling, funding a business, common challenges, best approaches to something etc.
Please, I beseech thee – read as many books on entrepreneurship as you can, and you will probably come back and appreciate this blog or website after your findings.
To give you an easy start, please check out 10 Best Books Written by Entrepreneurs, and The 38 Books by Entrepreneurs for Entrepreneurs that Will Transform Your Business and Career. I won’t spoon-feed you by telling you the best ones. In any case what is best for me might not be the best for you. Got it?
4. Join business incubation centers or entities. Today you will find various business incubation centers across many countries. The drive for promoting entrepreneurship is taking on more focus than ever before as global economies appreciate the value.
This is another incredibly good way to learn entrepreneurship, since they have various programs that help identify and develop viable, successful and sustainable enterprises.
Left to me – I would recommend that every entrepreneurship graduate should be attached to a business incubation program – because this is where the test of the pudding it. There is not so much value reading endless academic publications in entrepreneurship, and coming out with some piece of paper qualification – when someone is as clueless on the practices as another who has never read books.
If you go through this program and come out just as opaque as before – I give up for you. Period.
5. Subscribe to online business games including designed based-learning and practice simulated running of a business. This is another near-practical learning opportunity I would recommend to anyone interested in learning entrepreneurship. Though you might get more benefits by doing this in teams and also in a competitive environment, it’s really a worthwhile program.
Don’t mind about the little money they may charge for this. The intrinsic value is certainly hundreds of times the money you pay.
I had the privilege to participate in some of these programs – like virtually operating a commercial airport and also a global carbon bike manufacturing and distribution business, and I can assure you that you really get deep into business.
Here you learn to consider and make critical decisions – with results- about all the facets of running a successful business – be it production, procurement, logistics, marketing and distribution, human resource, product pricing, making use of feedback from the market etc.
14 Best Business Simulation Games Of 2021 | Learn Economic And Strategy – is a good starting point to identify something to try. Ok? Just give it a shot.
6. Develop an entrepreneurial mindset. Again, Mr. Entrepreneur – getting your hands around the entrepreneurship agenda requires you to really imbibe the spirit of entrepreneurship.
Honestly, many folks very much admire successful entrepreneurs – but they rarely understand the spirit of the game. I mean the deeper flow.
I’m talking about things such as optimism and belief in yourself, independent mindset, deep thinking, analytical thinking, asking the right questions, validating ideas, critical thinking, lean thinking, renaissance mentality, innovation and creativity, curiosity, risk appetite, the art of execution, disruptive ideas, continuous experimentation, delaying gratification, focus and resilience, effective communication and leading to bring people to your vision, reflective thinking – just name it.
Permit me to quickly direct you to How To Foster An Entrepreneurial Spirit and Seven Characteristics To Foster Your Entrepreneurial Spirit before I leave this point.
Let me just warn you! Don’t be lazy – as long as you really want to properly and adequately learn entrepreneurship. You need to work at it. Ok? Don’t blame anybody if you can’t put your act together.
You simply have to enter into the flow – as I mentioned. You need to adopt the above characteristics and lifestyle of entrepreneurs to succeed in the entrepreneurship world.
Academic books will not teach you enough. I’m sure. I’ve been there before.
Additionally, don’t complain that I’m referring you to lots of articles to read. They are for your benefit – and I’m not forcing you to read them. It’s up to you!
Let’s proceed. Three more points remaining before I run away. It’s nice. Isn’t it? Or do you need much more than these?
7. Network with relevant people. Through networking, a person can gain a lot of practical knowledge about entrepreneurship. Relating with industry experts, investors, business consultants etc. add a lot of value in learning entrepreneurship.
Networking and Why it is Important for Entrepreneurs? confirms the fact that networking provides for an entrepreneur benefits such as development opportunities, trust and motivation, and connectivity, among others.
Connecting with the right people makes an entrepreneur learn a lot.
Just a piece of advice – learn how to optimize your network and your modus operandi within the network – otherwise you could be very much engaged with time wasting networks that could be detrimental to your entrepreneurial growth and development.
8. If you are in a large company, ask for projects and intrapreneurship opportunities. There are folks working in large companies that are interested in learning and practicing entrepreneurship.
Thanks to modern business practices – the concept of intrapreneurship is gaining ground, and there are also Ways to Foster a More Entrepreneurial Culture within a company. So, employees are free to start practicing entrepreneurship within the corporate environment.
If you are the employer – don’t worry too much that they will run away after learning how to make money. Ok? Before they go you will have gained from them. Trust me.
Now – let me proceed to my last point.
This another incredibly good way to learn entrepreneurship. I know you might argue with me that this point is very closely connected to item six above – developing an entrepreneurial mindset. Yes – to some extent, but there are more personality related issues that need to be emphasized.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m talking about stuff like working weird hours, strange work habits, lack of real vacation, doing crazy things, losing certain categories of friends, loneliness etc.
In conclusion, I candidly think that these 9 Incredibly Good (Never Miss) Ways to Learn Entrepreneurship are very valuable. Don’t you think so? At least, this is the way I look at it and let me pray that you see some value in this approach.
Now, if you have enjoyed this blog post, please kindly share it with everyone you know that could be interested in this.
Let me also get your feedback through the comments section below.
Additionally, let us know if there are any specific topics you would like us to write on.
By the way, permit me to recommend Top 90 Entrepreneur Blogs, where you will get a collection of various interesting entrepreneurship blogs.
Till then – and please stay safe!
The Wise Entrepreneur