Of all the numerous, albeit similar, definitions of an entrepreneur, the online business dictionary definition seems to reflect my position the most. It defines an entrepreneur simply as: "Someone who exercises initiative by organizing a venture to take benefit of an opportunity and, as the decision maker, decides what, how, and how much of a good or service will be produced (http://www.businessdictionary.co m/definition/entrepreneur.html). Simply put, from the foregoing definition, entrepreneurship involves 4 major events:
Irrespective of scale, every entrepreneur must go through these four processes or events. Just as it is impossible to conceive a child without pregnancy, you cannot lay claims to being an entrepreneur, unless you had gone through these 4 broad processes.
1) Opportunity varies from; one society to another, one industry to another, social class to another, etc. However, without an opportunity to offer goods and services, entrepreneurship is a stillbirth. You can however create your own opportunity and profit therefrom.
As our intuitive capacities differ, so also are our capabilities to identify opportunities. If you give 10 entrepreneurs, 20kgs of groundnut each, you are most likely to have at least 10 different outcomes of goods and services therefrom. Why? That's just the way we are as humans: wired differently!
2) Decisions and initiatives naturally follow opportunities identified/created by entrepreneurs. Based on a combination involving their skills, experience, intuition and resources, entrepreneurs build organisations/systems of varying capacities to deliver goods and services to a target market, always for PROFIT.
Entrepreneurship is not a romantic quest. It could be a very gruelling and lonely journey, in which many have perished all. Thus entrepreneurs must possess certain traits and capacities to find it comfortable, in spite of all the odds, to venture at a quest in which success is not guaranteed. Not many/all are cut out for entrepreneurship. It is therefore important to know thyself too well before setting out as an entrepreneur.
If you are not ready to fail publicly, not prepared to be mocked at what you believe, not ready to stand alone, you are most unlikely to succeed as an entrepreneur. To every successful entrepreneur, you find a success built on past failures and disappointments. In truth, entrepreneurs don't fail, they merely discover "another way of not doing it".
3). Organisations/Ventures are simply the media through which the entrepreneur intends to realise his/her objectives. These vary from as simple as mere peddling of information by word of mouth for profit this is essentially what most agents do), to the establishment of very detailed and complex systems. All targeted at leveraging for profit.
As the entrepreneur him/herself grows, these systems of realising profit grow as well. Thus, Dangote that started as a trader decades ago has today become a colossus and the richest man in Africa.
4). Services/Goods are the materials the entrepreneur delivers to the target market for profit. They necessarily need not be his/her creation. Flowers are grown in East Africa by entrepreneurial farmers and shipped by entrepreneurial importers to Europe for sale. The goods/services also wary from the intangible to the tangible.
From the important to the mundane. As human needs vary, so are there creative entrepreneurs to fulfil these needs.
Entrepreneurship has a lot to do with the person of the entrepreneur. Opportunities are always and forever in existence. One's capacity to identify, interpret and exploit them will stand you out.
However, everyone must note that entrepreneurship is forever a journey unto the unknown. Past successes never guarantee against a future failure, and vice versa. My candid advice to every entrepreneur is to define the "WHY" of his/her venture at the onset. Always set "value limits" of DOs and DON'Ts ab initio.
By Mawuli Amedofu
When I say Agooo You respond Ameee (2x)
Agoo …….. Agoo ………
We represent a tapestry of beauty Woven together on looms of togetherness
The dawning of a new Africa Carved from the remains of the old
Finding our wobbling feet in another's crib
Our deeming eyes another's light Our deafening ears another's sound
Oh speak to the fountain of words Flow into drained drains and bring hope
Oh flow Nile deep into the caves Let's walk bravely no matter how slow and far to the Thabu Bosui Where we carry our touches of hope With our guns of peace, lets battle and defeat war
With our driven pride Make poverty poor
And starve hunger till it dies Hand in hand
Let the north shake its head And the south stump its feet
Let the West bend its waist as the East do the hop
Let's do the beautiful dance as we wave disunity goodbye
Uniting within our diversity and live as one community
Amandla –Response Awetu (2x) Mawuli ©