Most enterprise support services are designed around the assumption that if the entrepreneur has the right business idea (one that is ‘viable’) then they can be helped to make a successful business from it. It is the quality of the idea that is central and we develop the entrepreneur around it.
This is putting the cart before the horse:
Most entrepreneurs make money out of plans b, c, d or z rather than plan A. However it is plan A that they love at the moment – and if you want to work with them positively this is the plan that you will have to help them to explore and develop. If you do your job well they will make the right decision about whether to put it into practice or not – and learn a lot in the process. Building the entrepreneur is more important than building the business.
Entrepreneurs are not born – they are made. They learn how to act, think and make decisions that are entrepreneurial. ‘If you disagree then let’s pop down to the maternity ward and you show me the borne entrepreneurs’. Our job in developing an enterprise culture is to build the skills and commitment of would be entrepreneurs so that they keep developing and evaluating ideas until they find the right one for them. This process of choosing the right idea to invest time and money in is the really enterprising bit. This is where the gold is and the value can be added.
- So why do we put so much time and effort into helping people to refine ideas instead of in having more ideas?
- Why don’t we encourage people to be dispassionate about their ideas – until they have courted enough to be REALLY passionate about the one they love?