Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Your Comments - Part 3 - "Born or Made"

We promised to provide you with some of the feedback being received on our Linkedin Poll, where we asked the question: Are Entrepreneurs Born, or are they Made?

Our Linkedin Poll was launched on December 18, 2011 and your response has been overwhelming!  Thank you to all who contributed to the debate or voted in our poll.
Below are just a few of the comments that were provided. We have generally not edited what you see below. We trust that it being place on this BLOG will allow opportunity for other to join in the discussion.  Enjoy and please ADD your COMMENTS to this POST!

Ed Davies • HI Jim, good question. I believe that entrepreneurs are created by the example of family and friends, business experience and by being blessed with the abilities needed to get the job done. It's not what we have been given however ,its what we do with it that makes the difference. The greatest support an entrepreneur has is a strong sense of self worh based on a solid understanding of who you are. It's like any other relationship if you don't love yourself you can't love others. And in a business relationship if you don't have a good sense of who you are, what's important to you, and that what you have to offer is of value life will be difficult. 

Dawna Allard • Such a great question as we strive to support Alberta's entrepreneurs realize their aspirations. I agree enterpreneurs can be made however, they fall under the 80-20 rule where the minority are the truly successful ones that have a natural born trait. When this trait is mixed with the other necessary ingredients of timing of education, work and life experiences - we get our Great Entrepreneurs. So both born and made applies!  

Stever Robbins • It's interesting how many of the comments here deal with willingness to take risks. The research I was exposed to when working at Babson College (#1 in the world for entrepreneurship for 15 years at both grad & undergrad level) is precisely the opposite: entrepreneurs are NOT more risk-seeking than anyone else. They are often obsessed with minimizing risk, in fact. Entrepreneur-as-risk-taker is a very, very common stereotype that is unsupported by the data. See: http://www.jstor.org/pss/255515 http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20100331/SMALLBIZ/100339984# http://davetroy.com/posts/tag/effectuation 

The work of Saras Sarasvathy doing cognitive profiling of successful serial entrepreneurs suggests that (successful) entrepreneurs bound their risk to what they can afford to lose and work within that budget. They don't perceive it as risk because they've made the a priori decision that they are willing to lose the resources on the table. See http://www.effectuation.org for details on her fascinating and extremely applicable research. 

Also see http://actiontrumpseverything.com/ for her work as it's being brought out of the academic community into the mainstream. 

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