Entrepreneurship – The buzzword for the Third Millennium

Entrepreneurship – The buzzword and the catchphrase for the third millennium – everyone is talking about it,  specially after the creation of entrepreneurial icons such a Steve Jobs, Richard Branson,Bill Gates
and Mark Zuckerberg ( in the last few years) by the modern media.

The media tells us that entrepreneurs are those who “take risk, engage resources, create wealth and generate employment”. Isn’t it true for all business-owners?

Does this mean that all business-owners are  entrepreneurs? The academics such as Howard Stevenson(Professor Emeritus Harvard Business School) defines entrepreneurship as the “pursuit of opportunity beyond the resources currently controlled by individuals”. He Further describes that an entrepreneur’s:

  • Strategic orientation is driven by perception of opportunity rather than resources currently controlled
  • Commitment to opportunity is quick rather than evolutionary with long duration
  • Commitment process is multistage with minimal exposure at each stage rather than single-stage with complete commitment upon decision
  • Control of resources is of episodic use or rent oriented rather than ownership or employment of required resources
  • Management structure is flat with multiple informal networks rather than formalised hierarchy;
    and
  • Compensation and reward system is value based and team based rather than resource based, individual and promotion oriented.

To discuss different entrepreneurial characteristics and traits, and to explore what distinguishes an entrepreneur from a business-owner, I invited Professor Paul Burns (An eminent scholar, bestseller/author of a number of textbooks on entrepreneurship, and a colleague at the University of Bedfordshire). What we discussed in an informal setting is enclosed for your view and exploration. We welcome your feedback for further knowledge generation and dissemination.

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