The word ‘entrepreneur” originates from the French “entreprendre” which means “to undertake”. In today’s context, it has come to mean to start and run a business. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the entrepreneur as one who organises, manages and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise.
“Can Entrepreneurship Be Taught?” asks an article in “Fortune”. Although many Universities and B-Schools have started courses in entrepreneurship, it appears certain that certain traits like risk taking or passion for what one is doing cannot be taught. What can be taught are ground rules for sound business.
Here is some insight from research at the University of Arizona in 2002. The average annual income for entrepreneurship majors and MBAs who concentrated in entrepreneurship, 5 years after graduation, was almost $72,000, or 27 percent higher than for other business majors and students with standard MBAs.
Moreover, entrepreneurship graduates were 3 times more likely to form new companies. And these were not mom-and-pop shops. On average the businesses had annual sales of $50 million and employed 200.
Even those entrepreneurship graduates who took jobs within large companies earned bigger paychecks: $23,500 more a year on average than for other business graduates. Of course, students ambitious enough to enroll in entrepreneurship classes in the first place are likely to be more driven and confident than their peers. Even so, the gap in numbers is striking.
Ultimately, I guess the entrepreneur must have business smarts.