Entrepreneurship as a Career
The greatest challenge before the youngsters in India today is to build the country into an economic global giant. The obvious questions that come to the minds of most of them are - “Why should we in India think of being an entrepreneur? Why not work as part of a larger organisation where the opportunities and resources to scale ideas are perhaps far greater?
Entrepreneurship is important for two reasons. One, it furthers innovation to find new solutions to existing and emerging demands. Two, it offers far greater opportunities for wealth creation for self and the society than anything else. Entrepreneurship has its challenges. It is about 20 per cent luck and 80 per cent effort, clarity, courage, confidence, passion and above all smartness.
What leads a person to take up entrepreneurship as a career option? There can be a number of reasons including displacement from a job, frustration in the present job, not getting a job of his/her choice, etc. Sometimes a person realises much in advance that his/her job is in jeopardy, as the organisation is moving towards closure. At times a deserving employee getting superseded in promotion is compelled to quit the job and look for doing something on his own. Some people object to a system wherein reward is often based on seniority rather than merit.
Above facts are corroborated by the research findings of Gilad and Levine (1986). They proposed two closely-related explanations of entrepreneurial motivation, the “push” and the “pull” theory. The “push” theory argues that individuals are pushed into entrepreneurship by negative external forces, such as job dissatisfaction, difficulty in finding employment, insufficient salary, or inflexible work schedule. The “pull” theory contends that individuals are attracted into entrepreneurial activities seeking independence, self-fulfillment, wealth, and other desirable outcomes. Research (Keeble et at., 1992; Orhan and Scott, 2001) indicates that individuals become entrepreneurs primarily due to “pull” factors rather than “push” factors.
Some of the prominent pull factors that attract individuals towards entrepreneurship as a career option are: High Need for Independence: There are personalities who would like to have freedom about: with whom to work, when to work, with whom to do business at what terms etc. It is this instinct in them that pushes such personalities to start something of their own.
To satisfy the dream of having high Financial Rewards: To satisfy the need to derive high financial rewards as an outcome of efforts leads some to start a business of their own. The fundamental difference between job and own venture lies in the degree of financial rewards for the efforts put in to achieve organisational goals.
Opportunity to deal with all aspects of a business: No job can provide an opportunity to learn and deal effectively with a wide spectrum of business activities starting from idea generation, conceptualisation, design, creation, marketing to customer response and customer satisfaction.
Vision to leave a long lasting mark: Entrepreneurship creates an opportunity to make definite contribution to the society by lifting the people in and around the venture. A continuous zeal to innovate helps in touching the heads and hearts of people at large.
A strong urge from within to start a business, combined with workable innovative ideas, careful planning, and hard work can lead to a very engaging, self-satisfying, enjoyable and profitable endeavour. The greatest contributory factor to entrepreneurship is an intention i.e. a strong purpose in life coupled with determination to produce desired results.
Positive aspects of entrepreneurship.
There is no age bar to entrepreneurship. But youth is certainly more suited to take up an entrepreneurial venture because they are technologically precocious, do not fear from change and challenge, and have greater ability to see things differently.
Thus, leaving aside the pull and push factors leading to entrepreneurship, the fundamental decision to take up entrepreneurship as a career option gets guided by a three part process in which an individual weighs the desirability of self-employment with the desirability of working for others, possession of competencies and capabilities to undertake entrepreneurial venture. The fact remains that present environment provides great entrepreneurial opportunities and more and more youngsters are consciously opting for it a as career option.
Being the boss if his own business, he enjoys unlimited powers. He can do things in his own way and he need not take orders from someone else. He can make his own decisions and act on them.
There are numerous opportunities for his self- development.
Working on one‟s own and thus getting rewards yields immense satisfaction and pleasure for more than what he can get in a job.
Monetary rewards can be more than commensurate with his capacity and capabilities.
He can command deference and respect of his immediate family and friends. It is a kind of intangible reward.
Instead of depending on others, he generates employment for others.
He can make significant contribution to the development of the country and be proud of taking part in nation building activities.
He can be a great achiever realising his goals and proving his achievements to the world. He can be recognised for his outstanding efforts.
Though an entrepreneur is his own boss, in some respects he is not. It is so because he is constrained by various people like his financiers, labourers, suppliers, customers and so on.
He may have to face frustration since the scope of his operations is limited by his limited resources.
He has to work long and hard hours from morning to dusk and his venture tends to absorb all his energy and time. This may affect his social and family life.
At times he may have to face disappointments and frustrations since everything in his venture may not always work the way he would like it to.
He has to always work with tension since there is always the risk of failure.