Can Entrepreneurship Be Taught?

Wednesday, June 20, 2007 at 2:00pm by Site Administrator

There are many schools of business out there, and even a few that have a center for entrepeneurship and innovation [Inside Bay Area]. But considering that passion and tenacity are two characteristics of an entrepreneur, according to the Inside Bay Area article, can entrepreneurship be taught? Sure, you can teach all the business aspects, the cash flow, the team building, hiring, management, etc. What about the passion?

Also according to the article, some venture capitalists will not fund an entrepreneur if they don’t have “fire in the eye”. That’s understandable, though if you have that fire in the eye anyway, you very likely could bootstrap your own business, without a lot of capital.

But here’s something I’ve learned by observation over many years, something they probably don’t teach in business/ entrepreneurship school. The real fire in the eye comes from within, of course, for whatever reasons – environment, etc.. You don’t even have to come from a supportive and/or succesful family environment – many successful entrepreneurs came from poor and/or broken families. They come from different walks of life, even based in/ from communist countries or homeless. However, in my humble opinion, you can have all the passion, but if you don’t have some sort of support system – friends, family, partners, life partners – when you actually start entrepreneuring, the passion will start to leach out of you without a great deal of discipline. Or passion and tenacity – which are related to discipline.

As for the primary question, yes, I think entrepreneurship can be taught – especially to people who have entrepreneurial characteristics. And yes, I think the right coach can coax embers of passion out of a willing entrepreneur into a fire, if both parties are willing to put in the effort, and if the student has a support system in place that doesn’t leave out the emotional needs.

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