Entrepreneurship comes from the French verb ‘entreprendre’ which means ‘To undertake,’ is the act and art of being an entrepreneur or one who undertakes innovations or introducing new things, finance and business acumen in an effort to transform innovations into economic goods. This may result in new organizations or may be part of revitalizing mature organizations in response to a perceived opportunity. The most obvious form of entrepreneurship is that of starting new businesses (referred as Startup Company); however, in recent years, the term has been extended to include social and political forms of entrepreneurial activity. When entrepreneurship is describing activities within a firm or large organization it is referred to as intra-preneurship and may include corporate venturing, when large entities spin-off organizations.
The term entrepreneur also is a loanword from French, and is commonly used to describe an individual who organizes and operates a business or businesses, taking on financial risk to do so. The term was first defined by the Irish-French economist Richard Cantillon as the person who pays a certain price for a product to resell it at an uncertain price, thereby making decisions about obtaining and using the resources while consequently admitting the risk of enterprise. The term first appeared in the French Dictionary “Dictionnaire Universel de Commerce” of Jacques des Bruslons published in 1723.
Over time, scholars have defined the term in different ways. Here are some prominent definitions.
• 1803: Jean-Baptiste Say: An entrepreneur is an economic agent who unites all means of production- land of one, the labour of another and the capital of yet another and thus produces a product. By selling the product in the market he pays rent of land, wages to labour, interest on capital and what remains is his profit. He shifts economic resources out of an area of lower and into an area of higher productivity and greater yield.
• 1934: Schumpeter: Entrepreneurs are innovators who use a process of shattering the status quo of the existing products and services, to set up new products, new services.
• 1961: David McClleland: An entrepreneur is a person with a high need for achievement [N-Ach]. He is energetic and a moderate risk taker.
• 1964: Peter Drucker: An entrepreneur searches for change, responds to it and exploits opportunities. Innovation is a specific tool of an entrepreneur hence an effective entrepreneur converts a source into a resource.
• 1971: Kilby: Emphasizes the role of an imitator entrepreneur who does not innovate but imitates technologies innovated by others. Are very important in developing economies.
• 1975: Albert Shapero: Entrepreneurs take initiative, accept risk of failure and have an internal locus of control.
• 1975: Howard Stevenson: Entrepreneurship is “the pursuit of opportunity without regard to resources currently controlled.”
• 1983: G. Pinchot: Intrapreneur is an entrepreneur within an already established organization.[note 1]
• 1985: W.B. Gartner: Entrepreneur is a person who started a new business where there was none before.
According to Paul Reynolds, entrepreneurship scholar and creator of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, “by the time they reach their retirement years, half of all working men in the United States probably have a period of self-employment of one or more years; one in four may have engaged in self-employment for six or more years. Participating in a new business creation is a common activity among U.S. workers over the course of their careers.” And in recent years has been documented by scholars such as David Audretsch to be a major driver of economic growth in both the United States and Western Europe. “As well, entrepreneurship may be defined as the pursuit of opportunity without regard to resources currently controlled (Stevenson,1983)”
Entrepreneurial activities are substantially different depending on the type of organization and creativity involved. Entrepreneurship ranges in scale from solo projects (even involving the entrepreneur only part-time) to major undertakings creating many job opportunities. Many “high value” entrepreneurial ventures seek venture capital or angel funding (seed money) in order to raise capital to build the business. Angel investors generally seek annualized returns of 20-30% and more, as well as extensive involvement in the business. Many kinds of organizations now exist to support would-be entrepreneurs including specialized government agencies, business incubators, science parks, and some NGOs. In more recent times, the term entrepreneurship has been extended to include elements not related necessarily to business formation activity such as conceptualizations of entrepreneurship as a specific mindset (see also entrepreneurial mindset) resulting in entrepreneurial initiatives e.g. in the form of social entrepreneurship, political entrepreneurship, or knowledge entrepreneurship have emerged.
The entrepreneur is a factor in microeconomics, and the study of entrepreneurship reaches back to the work of Richard Cantillon and Adam Smith in the late 17th and early 18th centuries, but was largely ignored theoretically until the late 19th and early 20th centuries and empirically until a profound resurgence in business and economics in the last 40 years.
In the 20th century, the understanding of entrepreneurship owes much to the work of economist Joseph Schumpeter in the 1930s and other Austrian economists such as Carl Menger, Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich von Hayek. In Schumpeter, an entrepreneur is a person who is willing and able to convert a new idea or invention into a successful innovation. Entrepreneurship employs what Schumpeter called “the gale of creative destruction” to replace in whole or in part inferior innovations across markets and industries, simultaneously creating new products including new business models. In this way, creative destruction is largely responsible for the dynamism of industries and long-run economic growth. The supposition that entrepreneurship leads to economic growth is an interpretation of the residual in endogenous growth theory and as such is hotly debated in academic economics. An alternate description posited by Israel Kirzner suggests that the majority of innovations may be much more incremental improvements such as the replacement of paper with plastic in the construction of a drinking straw.
For Schumpeter, entrepreneurship resulted in new industries but also in new combinations of currently existing inputs. Schumpeter’s initial example of this was the combination of a steam engine and then current wagon making technologies to produce the horseless carriage. In this case the innovation, the car, was transformational but did not require the development of a new technology, merely the application of existing technologies in a novel manner. It did not immediately replace the horsedrawn carriage, but in time, incremental improvements which reduced the cost and improved the technology led to the complete practical replacement of beast drawn vehicles in modern transportation. Despite Schumpeter’s early 20th-century contributions, traditional microeconomic theory did not formally consider the entrepreneur in its theoretical frameworks (instead assuming that resources would find each other through a price system). In this treatment the entrepreneur was an implied but unspecified actor, but it is consistent with the concept of the entrepreneur being the agent of x-efficiency.
Different scholars have described entrepreneurs as, among other things, bearing risk. For Schumpeter, the entrepreneur did not bear risk: the capitalist did.
For Frank H. Knight (1921) and Peter Drucker (1970) entrepreneurship is about taking risk. The behavior of the entrepreneur reflects a kind of person willing to put his or her career and financial security on the line and take risks in the name of an idea, spending much time as well as capital on an uncertain venture. Knight classified three types of uncertainty.
• Risk, which is measurable statistically (such as the probability of drawing a red color ball from a jar containing 5 red balls and 5 white balls).
• Ambiguity, which is hard to measure statistically (such as the probability of drawing a red ball from a jar containing 5 red balls but with an unknown number of white balls).
• True Uncertainty or Knightian Uncertainty, which is impossible to estimate or predict statistically (such as the probability of drawing a red ball from a jar whose number of red balls is unknown as well as the number of other colored balls).
The acts of entrepreneurship are often associated with true uncertainty, particularly when it involves bringing something really novel to the world, whose market never exists. However, even if a market already exists, there is no guarantee that a market exists for a particular new player in the cola category.
The place of the disharmony-creating and idiosyncratic entrepreneur in traditional economic theory (which describes many efficiency-based ratios assuming uniform outputs) presents theoretic quandaries. William Baumol has added greatly to this area of economic theory and was recently honored for it at the 2006 annual meeting of the American Economic Association.
The entrepreneur is widely regarded as an integral player in the business culture of American life, and particularly as an engine for job creation and economic growth. Robert Sobel published The Entrepreneurs: Explorations Within the American Business Tradition in 1974. Zoltan Acs and David Audretsch have produced an edited volume surveying Entrepreneurship as an academic field of research, and more than a hundred scholars around the world track entrepreneurial activity, policy and social influences as part of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) and its associated reports. nowadays, information on this site is not available
Characteristics of an entrepreneur
Entrepreneurs have many of the same character traits as leaders, similar to the early great man theories of leadership; however trait-based theories of entrepreneurship are increasingly being called into question. Entrepreneurs are often contrasted with managers and administrators who are said to be more methodical and less prone to risk-taking. Such person-centric models of entrepreneurship have shown to be of questionable validity, not least as many real-life entrepreneurs operate in teams rather than as single individuals. Still, a vast literature studying the entrepreneurial personality argues that certain traits seem to be associated with entrepreneurs:
• Bird – mercurial, that is, prone to insights, brainstorms, deceptions, ingeniousness and resourcefulness. they are cunning, opportunistic, creative, and unsentimental.
• Busenitz and Barney – prone to overconfidence and over generalizations.
• Cole – found there are four types of entrepreneur: the innovator, the calculating inventor, the over-optimistic promoter, and the organization builder. These types are not related to the personality but to the type of opportunity the entrepreneur faces.
• Collins and Moore – tough, pragmatic people driven by needs of independence and achievement. They seldom are willing to submit to authority.
• Cooper, Woo, & Dunkelberg – argue that entrepreneurs exhibit extreme optimism in their decision-making processes.
• John Howkins – focused specifically on creative entrepreneurship. He found that entrepreneurs in the creative industries needed a specific set of traits including the ability to prioritise ideas over data, to be nomadic and to learn endlessly.
• David McClelland – primarily motivated by an overwhelming need for achievement and strong urge to build.
These individuals are focused on making their businesses work, and eliminate any hindrances or distractions to their goals. They have overarching strategies and outline the tactics to accomplish them. Successful entrepreneurs are disciplined enough to take steps every day toward the achievement of their objectives.
The entrepreneur does not ask questions about whether they can succeed or whether they are worthy of success. They are confident with the knowledge that they will make their businesses succeed. They exude that confidence in everything they do.
3. Open Minded
Entrepreneurs realize that every event and situation is a business opportunity. Ideas are constantly being generated about workflows and efficiency, people skills and potential new businesses. They have the ability to look at everything around them and focus it toward their goals.
4. Self Starter
Entrepreneurs know that if something needs to be done, they should start it themselves. They set the parameters and make sure that projects follow that path. They are proactive, not waiting for someone to give them permission.
Many companies are formed because an entrepreneur knows that they can do a job better than another. They need to win at the sports they play and need to win at the businesses that they create. An entrepreneur will highlight their own company’s track record of success.
One facet of creativity is being able to make connections between seemingly unrelated events or situations. Entrepreneurs often come up with solutions which are the synthesis of other items. They will repurpose products to market them to new industries.
Entrepreneurs are not thwarted by their defeats. They look at defeat as an opportunity for success. They are determined to make all of their endeavors succeed, so will try and try again until it does. Successful entrepreneurs do not believe that something cannot be done.
8. Strong people skills
The entrepreneur has strong communication skills to sell the product and motivate employees. Most successful entrepreneurs know how to motivate their employees so the business grows overall. They are very good at highlighting the benefits of any situation and coaching others to their success.
9. Strong work ethic
The successful entrepreneur will often be the first person to arrive at the office and the last one to leave. They will come in on their days off to make sure that an outcome meets their expectations. Their mind is constantly on their work, whether they are in or out of the workplace.
Passion is the most important trait of the successful entrepreneur. They genuinely love their work. They are willing to put in those extra hours to make the business succeed because there is a joy their business gives which goes beyond the money. The successful entrepreneur will always be reading and researching ways to make the business better.
Successful entrepreneurs want to see what the view is like at the top of the business mountain. Once they see it, they want to go further. They know how to talk to their employees, and their businesses soar as a result.
It has assumed super importance for accelerating economic growth both in developed and developing countries. It promotes capital formation and creates wealth in country. It is hope and dreams of millions of individuals around the world. It reduces unemployment and poverty and it is a pathway to prosper. Entrepreneurship is the process of exploring the opportunities in the market place and arranging resources required to exploit these opportunities for long term gain. It is the process of planning, organising, opportunities and assuming. Thus it is a risk of business enterprise. It may be distinguished as an ability to take risk independently to make utmost earnings in the market. It is a creative and innovative skill and adapting response to environment.
Given entrepreneurship’s potential to support economic growth, it is the policy goal of many governments to develop a culture of entrepreneurial thinking. This can be done in a number of ways: by integrating entrepreneurship into education systems, legislating to encourage risk-taking, and national campaigns. An example of the latter is the United Kingdom’s Enterprise Week.
Outside of the political world, research has been conducted on the presence of entrepreneurial theories in doctoral economics programs. Dan Johansson, fellow at the Ratio Institute in Sweden, finds such content to be sparse. He fears this will dilute doctoral programs and fail to train young economists to analyze problems in a relevant way.
Many of these initiatives have been brought together under the umbrella of Global Entrepreneurship Week, a worldwide celebration and promotion of youth entrepreneurship, which started in 2008. Empirical evidence obtained from real-world data also suggests that in transition economy and in troubled times, entrepreneurship and creativity are factors that can save the corporate sector from plunging into a downward spiral of unemployment, downsizing and further chaos.
Financial bootstrapping is a term used to cover different methods for avoiding using the financial resources of external investors. Bootstrapping can be defined as “a collection of methods used to minimize the amount of outside debt and equity financing needed from banks and investors”. The use of private credit card debt is the most known form of bootstrapping, but a wide variety of methods are available for entrepreneurs. While bootstrapping involves a risk for the founders, the absence of any other stakeholder gives the founders more freedom to develop the company. Many successful companies including Dell Computers and Facebook were founded this way.
There are different types of bootstrapping:
• Owner financing
• Sweat equity
• Minimization of the accounts receivable
• Joint utilization
• Delaying payment
• Minimizing inventory
• Subsidy finance
• Personal Debt
Many businesses need more capital than can be provided by the owners themselves, and in this case a range of options are available including:
• Angel Investors
• Venture capital investors.
• Crowd funding
• Hedge Funds
• Alternative Asset Management
Some of these source provide not only funds, but also financial oversight, accountability for carrying out tasks and meeting milestones, and in some cases business contacts and experience – in many cases in return for an equity stake.
Most prominately entrepreneurship education and the teaching of the adedemic culture of entrepreneurship, remains with the catalyts of the Australian Graduate school of Entrepreneurship (AGSE) at Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia which in March 1989 formed the first Master of Entrepreneurship and Innovation which teaches the corporate, technological and socio-environmental importance of entrepreneurship, also Swinburne has an undergraduate entrepreneurship program that teaches entrepreneurship from a grass-roots level.
Most Entrepreneurial research hot spots occur within a large entrepreneurial community such as the Masters of entrepreneurship and innovation (MEI) alumui and entrepreneurship PHD students at Swinburne University and Babson college which focuses primarily on the characteristics of entrepreneurs and the changes within the business culture as the result of more entrepreneurial management and thinking.