“I told my children when they were leaving education that they would be well advised to look for customers not bosses.” – Charles Handy

Following the successes of visionary thinkers like Apple’s Steve Jobs and Microsoft’s Bill Gates, the entrepreneurial spirit has taken the world by storm. But what exactly is entrepreneurship and who exactly qualifies as an entrepreneur? In this introductory article, we’ll answer those questions:

1. Entrepreneurship and the Entrepreneur

Despite many misconceptions, entrepreneurship isn’t simply about running a small business or owning a corner café to make ends meet. And entrepreneurs aren’t just a bunch of born egotistical gamblers who are out to do nothing but hit the jackpot (even if it means stepping over other people to make that happen) nor are they only young, energetic, lucky and rich. It all goes much further than that.

For Robert Kiyosaki, author of the acclaimed Rich Dad series, entrepreneurship is about bringing together people, opportunity, and money. It’s about sacrificing a life of security in exchange for a life of for freedom. Entrepreneurs use limited resources to create new markets that satisfy consumer needs and bring about massive change. They take risks and use innovation to shake things up instead of being confined to society’s comfort zone.

2. Entrepreneurship in Africa

One of Africa’s biggest blocks to creating more entrepreneurs is the problem of bureaucratic hurdles and not enough protection from systems that may have grown used to being corrupt. There is also a problem of poor levels of education and literacy, which isn’t helped by the fact that acquiring these skills can be difficult for those who lack the resources to get trained or access to telecommunications, effectively leaving them “broadbanned”.

But, thanks to a huge amount of skills development and financing from both the public and private sectors, the situation is turning around. Schools now teach entrepreneurship to students and people of all backgrounds are encouraged to learn too or else be left behind. Suddenly we see more and more people taking responsibility for creating new jobs leading to Africa’s slow but steady rise from poverty to power.

3. Becoming an Entrepreneur

While much of the change that comes from new ways of thinking (and operating on such a large scale) can be stressful, becoming and entrepreneur isn’t impossible. In Before You Quit Your Job, Robert Kiyosaki suggests that in addition to mastering leadership, you must gain experience in managing the cash flow, communications, systems, product, and legal aspects involved before deciding which will be your niche.

A great place to start gaining practical business skills is through apprenticeships that allow you to learn on the job, network-marketing programmes to sharpen your sales skills, role models in your personal and professional life, and any other contacts that are prepared to be your mentor as things progress. All it takes is a little determination and a lot of groundwork to learn what needs to be learned. Ultimately, you never know who’s prepared to help until you ask.

Author's Bio: 

About Me

I have been an active writer for over a decade and published my first book in August 2007. This marked the start of Varsity Blah, a personal development blog that has now received almost 250,000 hits from over 120 countries worldwide. This article is one of almost 100 posts that were compiled into my upcoming book, which was reviewed on Authonomy.com: “This is some very insightful stuff… The way the book is structured, paired with your capabilities of drawing great narrative, leads this on the right path. This cleanses the mind.”

For more free chapters and special reports, please email editor@varsityblah.com.

About My Services

Graduating from college with distinctions in financial accounting and classical piano has given me a uniquely creative approach to all I do. As a personal development copywriter, I specialise in creating content on improving health, relationships, finances, and career. This includes writing and editing articles, papers, blog posts, web copy, and much more. My professional background in marketing (as well as my extensive experience as one of the first external bloggers for the World Advertising Research Centre) means I can also provide case studies, company profiles, and whitepapers focused on branding, communications, digital media, and market research.

For more information on the services I provide and to discuss your project needs, please email editor@varsityblah.com.