Sail Your Own Boat!
Growing and developing the next generation of entrepreneurs is vital for our survival and prosperity
BY: Dr. Shahid Amin Trali and Prof. Somen Mitra
Progress and complexities go hand in hand. One of the major challenges faced by most of the countries in the world today is to do with unemployment. The unemployment rate is growing at an alarming speed. India is not an exception. There is a huge gap between growth of job aspirants and actual job creation since last decade and more particularly in the last five to seven years. With the dearth of sufficient jobs, the frustration levels of our educated workforce can be at all time high which may have far reaching negative consequences. Today, a lower grade employee in a government organization is paid much better than one who is MBA/ MSC/ MA/ B.Tech etc. Unemployment is pushing our highly qualified graduates’ steps back and they feel demotivated and sometimes they get involved in unlawful activities.
Entrepreneurship is increasingly being recognized as a promising solution in most of the countries. It is being promoted actively by the Govt., Society and various supporting agencies. Entrepreneurship in any society is a sign of progress. If endorsed enthusiastically, it can help sustain growing economies; integrate unemployed individuals into the workforce besides leading to overall development of society. Entrepreneurship development is one of the most powerful weapons to create a positive and long-lasting change in our society. In India, good knowledge is not disseminated about what entrepreneurship is, how we can develop entrepreneurship, and how we can start and run successful businesses towards a better and self-reliant society. Besides, society at large is not aware about the merits of being a good entrepreneur. Entrepreneurship is what entrepreneurs do. Entrepreneurs are those who take initiatives and possess ‘never say die’ approach in achieving their business objectives.
Entrepreneurship comes in many different forms. Being an entrepreneur is not necessarily just about launching and running a business, it is about developing the entrepreneurial mindset, which is useful to anyone who is part of an organization. It is the mindset of looking at problems as opportunities and utilizing resources effectively and efficiently. This mindset encourages risk-taking, creativity, innovation, and out of the box thinking. Whatever the nature and height of problem, entrepreneurs will find a way towards better solutions even if they are short of resources. Good entrepreneurs are found anywhere irrespective of gender, culture, age, nature and size of business and education etc.
The United States and China are leading with the number of billionaires on earth and those are mostly concerned with the big business empires. US has found billionaires in Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Steve Jobs to Google’s Sergy Brin and Larry Page to Face Book Cofounder, Mark Zuckerberg and many more who are the front runners of innovation and entrepreneurial spirit. There are inspiring stories in other countries too covering different domains of business. India is home to ever increasing number of inspirational entrepreneurs. Inspiring stories of Dhiru Bai Ambani, Karsanbhai Patel, Azim Premji, Narayana Murthy etc. have been a greater source of belief for many to start the entrepreneurial journey. The need of the day is to create many more stars from the younger generation to try their hands at entrepreneurship.
Advancements in information and technology nowadays have made it possible to take small business initiatives to greater levels and with fewer resources. Almost all business areas are highly impacted by the technology be it Marketing, HR, Supply Chain, Logistics, etc. Telecom penetration overtaking financial inclusion with technology as an enabler has paved ways for smart solutions in the financial services sector.
Creating an environment that significantly promotes entrepreneurship calls for effective strategy implementation and involvement at all levels. It requires effective contributions from Government, industry, political, social as well as educational sectors. The policies at all levels need to provide opportunities as well as all possible assistance. Moreover, a right kind of environment is needed to give further impetus to entrepreneurship. Policy regulations will need to engage the business, banking, educational and other sectors to be able to deliver improved and definitive steps to encourage and aid entrepreneurship. Industry as a part of social responsibility can create a very strong platform to help develop the youth and give them the support and guidance. Schools, Colleges and Universities have a greater role in this moment as there is little or no focus on developing entrepreneurial skills and spirit. Through proper linkages with the industry they should not only design the course but they should increase more practical trainings to build the business confidence. Top Educational Institutions as IIM’s, IIT’s and emerging Universities like ITM University Gwalior, Amity, SRM, BML Munjal, VIT etc. have been successful with their incubation centers which have led to the significant development of entrepreneurs. Colleges and Universities must start such incubation centers which will facilitate entrepreneurs from idea generation to execution with required assistance and support.
Our bright students also have a huge responsibility and must come forward. They must develop right entrepreneurial spirit and need to be more efficient, realistic, and productive. The students need to develop entrepreneurial spirit and self-belief. Rightly said, that we are all inherently creative. The only time when we are not is when we allow our natural abilities to be clouded. One major challenge faced by our promising entrepreneurs is the lack of financial support as well as guidance to start a new business. The govt. and the concerned agencies through their interest and active support must create ways to provide financial assistance without major obstacles.
In India, the social and cultural outlook of the society discourages initiatives and entrepreneurship. Mostly society expects the youth to obtain education that enables them to get a job and earn salary to support the family. Society must accept that instead of finding a job, a graduate, Engineer or an MBA etc. can use skill set to open up his/her venture, which will not only result in mental satisfaction but also reward in terms of better economic gains. They would not only be able to contribute economically but also lead to vital job creation, which will enhance the inclusive growth and development of society at large.
Advancements in information and technology nowadays have made it possible to take small business initiatives to greater levels and with fewer resources. Moreover, most business areas are highly impacted by the technology be it Marketing, HR, Supply Chain, Logistics, etc. For example, telecom penetration in India overtaking banking penetration by leveraging technology has paved ways for smart and economical solutions in the financial services sector. These huge opportunities offered by the IT advancements can give birth to cheap yet innovative and effective solutions related to human beings. Growing and developing the next generation of entrepreneurs is vital for our survival and prosperity. In order to solve a long list of social problems that we face, we need to support those who will solve these problems. Entrepreneurial development can offer realistic solutions as well as lead the country towards inclusive growth. (Budding entrepreneurs can find valuable insights on www.startupdailytips.com).