Well another semester is under by belt teaching computer science students at UNC – Charlotte the principles of entrepreneurship. One of the things that I am beginning to realize and am extremely excited about is people can be taught to be an entrepreneur.
I know It’s not too much of a stretch to think or know that people can be taught to be an entrepreneur. Every college campus and some high schools have classes (some even majors) on entrepreneurship. What is new about my experience and now writing is what to teach. Traditionally entrepreneurship is taught as a business class. There is nothing wrong with that but in the business department there is focus on a business plan and target a market and less an emphasis on critical and creative thinking.
I have been surprised now that I have four semesters under my belt that these hardcore computer science students are drawn strongly to the creative thinking aspects of the course. I wanted to teach a class that is rooted in principles that separate a successful and a not so successful entrepreneur and creative thinking seems to be one of the key (the other being the ability to sell without people knowing you are selling).
I have found the link in creative thinking is innovation. As I swim in more and more entrepreneurial pools I am finding that people who just want to be rich have some variation of an idea that is already in motion and those that are truly innovative are the ones that can anticipate the curves and be the trends before they are the trends which takes a lot of creativity, trial, error and passion.
I am realizing that the chasm between non-entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs is that same link between innovation and creativity. Recently I joined with a group of local business leaders, university officials and city government representatives. I spent an entire day talking about how to grow entrepreneurial efforts in our community (which is sorely lacking). The outcome was a lot of grand plans that need a lot of money. I left unconformable with the recommendation but didn’t know why. It took me weeks to come to grips with why I felt like the group was on the wrong track. I realized that when ideas are formulated with no pressure test and no real plan of action they become very conservative in nature and very safe, which to me breaks the notion of innovation and creativity. And that is why non-entrepreneurs have trouble with entrepreneurs.
About The Author:
Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people that startedAvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact usfor more information.