How do we prepare aspiring entrepreneurs?

There are many people who believe that you can’t teach entrepreneurship. They believe it is either inherent or a skill that has to evolve from experience. There is no doubt that as in any other skillset there are people who are naturals. Also experience is a tough taskmaster and the school of hard knocks leading to rejection and failure has produced some great success stories. Opportunity and determination are the cornerstones of entrepreneurship. Recognizing achievable opportunities and the commitment to find solutions and implement then are absolute prerequisites. There is a teachable philosophy involved that enhances both of these attributes. But there is something else we can do for our aspiring entrepreneurs. We can do a much better job of preparing them. We can help them understand the basic philosophy, the many personal challenges they will face and all of the fundamental business issues from team building to funding that are common to every business. The failure rate for entrepreneurs is too high. Some would have you think that this is merely the nature of the beast-part of the mystique. We must add a new word to opportunity and determination and that word is preparation. With preparation we can turn reckless risk into managed risk and greatly improve the success rate. Working with the Creative Destruction Lab at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto I see many brilliant innovators anxious to start a business and get their project to market who lack this basic preparation. This lack extends much further to those entrepreneurs of necessity who will be trying to create and manage their own careers in our fast paced global economy.

Everyday Entrepreneur is written in a format that is relatable for anyone considering a career in entrepreneurship at any level. The focus is to use real anecdotes to put the reader in a business situation so he or she will recognize a similar issue when it develops. Preparation is an essential element of planning. The plan is not an outcome but rather a framework that allows us to anticipate and adjust as things evolve. Preparation and understanding are great assets for anticipation and adjustment. We need not build our businesses from the ground up. We can use the experience of others to prepare us. There are common bonds at every level of entrepreneurship. The goal of Everyday Entrepreneur’ which is coming out in December, is to convey as many ideas as possible that will make all our new entrepreneurs better prepared and help existing entrepreneurs put their challenges into prespective.

Praise for Everyday Entrepreneur
“Fred Dawkins has written a wonderful book about entrepreneurship unlike any other on the market. He brilliantly uses his storytelling skills to illuminate his subject in a way that makes the book a joy to read. You’re so wrapped up in the story that you may not realize how much you’re learning until you’ve turned that last page.”

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One Response to How do we prepare aspiring entrepreneurs?

  1. Tom Muncy says:

    The other suggestion is to encourage colleges/universities that offer a curriculum for entrepreneurship invite practicing(and successful) business owners to come in and talk for an hour about a particular subject—cash flow management, planning for growth, etc. and answer questions from the students—the interaction is “gold” for the students.

    Tom E. Muncy, CBI

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